no-dressing salad

This weekend I took my dad out in a little late birthday celebration. He just turned 70, guys. It kind of blows my mind and I notice the older I'm getting the more I'm savoring our time together. My dad has been through a few health issues in the past and there's nothing scarier than that. Sometimes it looms over me but I'm learning that I just need to focus on the here and now. We went to a battlefield that he hasn't visited since I was a kid. He's a big civil war buff. Then we went out to eat at one of the fancier places in town.

Village Square is one of my favorites. It's so pricey I can only afford to go once or twice a year [without feeling too guilty]. It has a fantastic ambiance, a seasonal menu, and a chef that knows what's what. We always get the filet mignon since it's cooked to perfection. As an appetizer we both got a salad. Dad wasn't a fan [although he got it sans onions which I thought was what made the meal]. I made this for my friends and it had mixed reviews. I think you need to be an onion fan for sure. 

When it comes to salads, I don't eat them too often. The thing is is that I really like ranch dressing. But when I use it, I feel so lame about it that I don't enjoy my salad. It's like I'm dousing unhealthy on top of healthy and it doesnt make a lot of sense to me. I've since found a few that I like that make me feel less guilty. I make an asian salad with a vinaigrette by Panera [it's sold at Target], and Panera has a thai salad that's amazing and super crunchy. 

This is the first salad that I've ever been able to eat without dressing. And I love love love it. I just made a ton to take with me to work.

-1 yellow onion
-1/4 c balsamic vinegar
-2 tbsp butter
-goat cheese crumbles
-1/4 lb bacon
-1/2 lb walnuts
-2 tsp sugar
-cinnamon & powdered ginger to taste
-1 egg white

Chop thick sliced bacon in small pieces. Cook, drain, set aside. Place walnuts in bowl and toss with one egg white. Lay out on baking sheet in a thin layer and sprinkle with a light coating of sugar, cinnamon, and powdered ginger. Place in a oven preheated to 350 degrees. Bake for about 10 minutes. 

In a large shallow pan, melt butter over medium heat. Add onions and cook until lightly browned, stirring frequently, about 5 minutes. Add balsamic vinegar and cook until reduced. 

Sprinkle spinach salad with walnuts, cheese, bacon, and top off with the balsamic onions. Enjoy!


  1. yum! sounds delicious, minus the bacon for me! and how awesome that you got to spend time with your dad!

  2. Goat cheese + bacon. I'm in! Looks delicious!

  3. Yum, never had a salad without dressing but it really sounds and looks delicious.


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