Plums are in season, so you can find lots of different varieties at the market right now. Inspired by this sweet, tender stone fruit, I developed a salad that’s easy to make and truly satisfying. Even better, this salad is helpful, if you’re trying to improve heart health. A new Yale University study published in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition put a small group of overweight adults on a walnut-enriched diet for four months. Each day, the participants ate one and one-half ounces of shelled walnuts. At the end of the experiment, scientists observed improved endothelial function in the participants. Endothelial cells regulate inflammation and control blood pressure.
So, try this salad, which adds heart-healthy walnuts to your diet, or just replace a less healthy snack with crunchy walnuts! Give it a shot, and let me know what you think!
Yield: 4 servings, Time: 20 minutes
1 Tbsp. sherry vinegar
½ tsp. Dijon mustard
1 Tbsp. finely chopped shallot
1 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
2 Tbsp. walnut oil
4 oz./4 cups mixed field greens such as Treviso, mizuna, arugula, butter lettuce, torn
1 cup/4 oz. slivered plums
1 cup/6 oz. slivered heirloom tomatoes
4 Tbsp. toasted walnut pieces
2 oz. smoked cheddar, cut into 4 even pieces
Fleur de sel and freshly ground black pepper, for finishing
In a small bowl, combine the sherry vinegar, Dijon mustard and shallot. Slowly whisk in the olive oil and walnut oil. Set aside.
To assemble the salad, toss the greens with the vinaigrette. Divide between 4 salad plates. Arrange the plums and tomatoes around the greens. Sprinkle with the walnuts and top with a piece of cheddar cheese. Sprinkle the plums and tomatoes with fleur de sel or other “finishing” salt if desired. Grind black pepper over the salad.
Calories: 190, Protein: 6 g, Total Fat: 14 g, Saturated Fat: 2 g, Cholesterol: 5 mg, Sodium: 140 mg, Fiber: 2 g, Vitamin A: 25%, Vitamin C: 25%, Calcium: 10%, Iron: 4%