Monday, March 12, 2012

Serving Up {Salad}: Cranberry Avocado Salad

I love avocados!  When I stumbled across this recipe it was titled "Cranberry Avocado Salad" and I truthfully assumed that it was an avocado salad.  I was super excited.  When I prepared the salad, and realized that it was a green salad topped with avocado's I was a little disappointed but got over it by doubling the avocado's called for to increase my avocado to green salad ratio.  (The original recipe calls for two avocados, I used four when I made it the first time, I listed three for the recipe below - and I increased the craisens a bit).  Since then I have made this salad a number of times and one time I made it without salad greens completely - just avocado, craisens and nuts topped with the delicious white balsamic poppy seed dressing.  Greens or not, I promise that this salad (and dressing) will have you licking your lips.

(recipe from The Cafe Sucre Farine)
printable version

1/3 cup sugar
1 1/2 Tbs. poppy seeds
1 1/2 Tbs. sesame seeds
1/2 tsp. paprika
2 tsp. dried mustard
1 Tbs. onion, minced
1/2 tsp. sea salt
1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup white balsamic vinegar
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil

12 ounces salad greens (baby spinach, arugula, field greens)
1 small bunch cilantro, washed and dried, leaves removed whole from stems
2-3 medium avocados, peeled and thinly sliced or chopped
1 cup dried cranberries
3/4  cup preferred nut (candied almonds or pecans)

For the dressing, combine all ingredients in a pint sized glass jar and shake well to dissolve sugar.

For the salad, place greens and cilantro leaves in a large bowl. Add avocado and dried cranberries and about 1/4 cup of the dressing and toss gently. Scatter candied almonds over salad and sprinkle lightly with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. Pass extra dressing at the table.


  1. Can I use fresh cranberries instead of dried? What do you think about adding chunks of fresh oranges?

  2. I think that fresh cranberries and orange would be a terrific flavor - and what a beautiful holiday salad!
    In my opinion, I find fresh cranberries to be more tart than their craisen counterparts, so it would be a personal preference.

  3. I decided to stick with the dried cranberries like you used, but I did add the oranges. And, I used toasted walnuts instead of the candied almonds or pecans. The salad was beautiful and delicious! I especially loved the dressing. Thank you so much for the recipe.