Monday, September 20, 2010

Michigan Salad with Cinnamon Raisin Croutons and Cherry Maple Vinaigrette

A new restaurant opened in town called Twisted Rooster. Their menu is guided by locally grown product offerings and has a twist on every meal. We have been there a couple of times now and love the food! I have to say that their house salad is awesome! The croutons are made with Cinnamon Raisin Bread! I knew I had to recreate this one at home and I am so glad that I did.

For the salad:
1 bag mixed greens (I did a combination of spinach and romaine)
1 Granny Smith Apple; diced
6-8 Strawberries; sliced
1 package Dried Cherries (I had leftovers that I have been using in cereal!)
1 small bag Pecans; toasted
Blue cheese crumbles; as much as you want

For the croutons:
6 thick slices of cinnamon raisin bread; cubed
2 Tablespoons butter
2 Tablespoons cinnamon
2 Tablespoons brown sugar

For the dressing:
1/4 cup red wine vinegar (or cider vinegar)
1/4 cup olive oil
3 Tablespoons maple syrup
1 Tablespoon cherry juice
1 Tablespoon Dijon mustard
Salt and Pepper

Preheat oven to 350. Cover a baking sheet with foil.
Melt butter in a large skillet and add the bread cubes; toss to coat.
Sprinkle cinnamon and brown sugar over bread cubes; toss to coat again. Spread cubes on the baking sheet and bake 10-15 minutes or until firm. Allow to cool.

Whisk together all the dressing ingredients.

Combine all salad ingredients, toss with dressing (as much as desired) and top with croutons.

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