As it turns out, I am not one of the lucky ones who can happily sit down to a huge bowl of salad greens and chow down. If I find a salad I truly like it must have accessories. And when I say accessories I mean a very nice helping of cheese, nuts, balsamic vinegar, herbs and/or fruit among other things. I just cannot enjoy plain old lettuce like some people do (including my husband).
I recently discovered a stellar combination of these accessories and also figured out a way to ensure I would get a generous dose with each piece of lettuce. These little salad rolls are more for the adults, but I did manage to talk my daughters into trying them since they do contain what they already know they love – glazed nuts! And I do have to say the glazed nuts almost taste like candy and are fabulous even as a snack just by themselves. There is no better way to make a plain old bowl of lettuce delicious.
- 1 cup of raw nuts (I used pecans)
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 2 teaspoons soy sauce (I found an organic low-sodium bottle at Earthfare)
- ⅛ teaspoon garlic powder
- ⅛ teaspoon cumin
- Pinch of cayenne (red) pepper, or more if you like it spicy
- Parchment paper for baking
- Medium sized lettuce leaves (I have used both Bibb lettuce and spinach)
- Goat cheese, crumbled with a fork
- Diced tomatoes, preferably homegrown or from the farmers’ market
- Preheat the oven (or toaster oven) to 375 degrees F.
- Mix all ingredients together and then spread the nuts onto a baking sheet that has been covered with parchment paper. Put in the oven and stir them every minute or two. When the nuts start to caramelize and become brown and bubbly they are done – after about 5 – 8 minutes. It is imperative that you check on them frequently because they can go from perfect to burnt very fast.
- Once done, let them cool then break apart if stuck together.
- Wash and tear off the lettuce leaves.
- Top each leaf with a small helping of diced tomatoes, crumbled goat cheese, and glazed nuts.
- Gently crack the ribbing in the leaf in a few places so it will roll over the toppings. Secure with a toothpick and serve.