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Mixed Greens with Gorgonzola, Frizzled Onions, Roasted Pecans, Roasted Pears and Apples

Yield: 24 servings.

4 medium red onions (10 oz. each), peeled and thinly sliced
2 cups buttermilk
2 cups flour
2 Tbsp. ancho chili powder
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. black pepper

4 Granny Smith apples
4 Asian pears
1/4 cup butter
2 Tbsp. sugar
1 Tbsp. ground cinnamon

1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup whole grain mustard
2 cups olive oil

6 quarts mixed salad greens
1 1/2 lb. Gorgonzola cheese
1 cup pecans, roasted

For frizzled onions: Cover sliced onions with buttermilk. Let sit a minimum of one hour. Mix flour, chili powder, salt and pepper. Preheat deep fryer to 375°F. Drain onions and toss with flour mixture, separating the rings and coating them completely. Fry in small batches until onion rings are golden.

For roasted fruit: Slice apples and pears into 1/4” thick slices. Melt butter in saucepan. Add sugar and cinnamon, stirring until melted. Completely coat the fruit with cinnamon mixture. Spread out on baking sheet and roast fruit in preheated 350°F oven for 15 minutes. Cool.

For honey mustard vinaigrette dressing: Combine vinegar, honey, and mustard in electric blender or food processor. Blend, then slowly add oil, blending until incorporated. Refrigerate. This may be made a day ahead.

Per serving: Toss 2/3 oz. (1 cup) greens and 2/3 Tbsp. pecans with 2 Tbsp. dressing, tossing until greens are lightly coated. Place on salad plate. Sprinkle with 1 oz. cheese and top with about 3/4 cup onion rings. Arrange 6 to 8 slices of roasted fruit spoke-fashion around plate.

From: Chef Sam Etheridge, Ambrozia Cafe and Wine Bar, Albuquerque, NM.

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