Do you think that salad is boring? Well, how about adding some crunch and extra flavor? Today I’m bringing you a very special and delicious pear salad recipe that has two creative tweaks – crispy chickpea croutons and lemon-mustard vinaigrette dressing. It’s fresh, healthy and filling at the same time!
Pear Salad With Crispy Chickpea Croutons [Vegan, Gluten-Free]
For the Salad:
- 2 1/2 ounces fresh spinach
- 1 small pear (or a half of a big pear)
- 1 ripe avocado
- 1/4 cup roughly chopped walnuts
- 2 tablespoons dried cranberries
- 1/4 of a small red onion, thinly sliced
For the Chickpea Croutons:
- 1 cup of cooked chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- A big pinch of sea salt and black pepper
For the Lemon-Mustard Vinaigrette Dressing:
- 2 tablespoon cold-pressed olive oil (extra virgin)
- 2 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
- 1 teaspoon maple syrup
- A pinch of sea salt and black pepper (to taste)
- Let’s start with making the chickpea croutons. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Spread the chickpeas on a kitchen towel (or a paper towel) and gently rub them, until they’re dry (don’t skip this step as it’s very important to get the chickpeas super crisp!). Discard any loose skins.
- Put the chickpeas in a bowl, add olive oil, thyme, salt, and pepper. Toss the chickpeas in the spices until they’re well coated. Then spread the chickpeas on a baking sheet lined with a baking paper. Roast the chickpeas in the oven until crisp and golden for about 30 minutes. When they’re done, let the chickpeas cool in the room temperature (they’ll crisp up even more).
- While the chickpeas are baking, prepare the lemon-mustard vinaigrette dressing. Mix all dressing’s ingredients in a small bowl until well combined.
- Now it’s time to set up the salad. Put the spinach in a large bowl. Quarter the pear and remove the core. Thinly slice the pear and put in on the spinach. Half the avocado, remove the seed and peel each half. Put in on a cutting board and make thin cuts. Fan out each half of avocado and put in on the salad (or just spread the slices on the salad). Thinly slice the red onion and add the salad. Sprinkle the salad with walnuts and cranberries.
- Finally, add the cooled chickpea croutons and drizzle the salad with the lemon-mustard vinaigrette.