for the salad:
blue cheese or gorgonzola
brown sugar and butter
granny smith apples sliced thin
for the dressing:
1 part olive oil
2 parts good balsamic vinegar
maple syrup to taste
1 clove garlic minced or pressed
1 tsp (or so) dijon mustard
salt and pepper
~put everything in a mason jar and shake. taste it and adjust as needed.
cook bacon, cut into small pieces and set aside. melt one tblsp butter in a pan, add walnuts and stir until toasted, add 3 tblsp brown sugar and cook until the sugar is dissolved and the walnuts are coated. i like to add a pinch of sea salt to bring out the flavor. it's also really good with the walnuts simply toasted in a pan if you don't want them candied. i like to dump the walnuts out onto parchment paper to let them cool.
assemble the salad: combine mixed greens with the dressing in a bowl. add a little bit at time to make sure you don't over dress. your hands are the best tools. plate some of the greens first then add bacon, blue cheese, walnuts, and sliced apples. i like to drizzle a little more dressing over the top.
you can also serve this in a big bowl for family meals.
i love this combination of salty and sweet, but the star here is really the dressing. my all time favorite is to add roasted beets to this. this is also really yummy with chicken breast in place of the bacon. (salt and pepper, pan sear the chicken and finish in the oven. let cool and slice.)