Like a good black dress, one perfect potluck salad can take you all the way from Thanksgiving through the holiday party season. This one can be doubled, and it’s a welcome bowl of green and crunchy fall ingredients that’s low in fat and calories.
Broccoli Pecan Salad
Adapted from “Pecans: A Savor the South Cookbook” (UNC Press, 2012).
1/2 cup pecans
2 small or 1 medium head of broccoli (for 5 to 6 cups florets)
1/2 cup dried cranberries or dried cherries
1/2 cup diced red onion (about ½ of a medium onion)
3 tablespoons mayonnaise
3 tablespoons nonfat Greek yogurt
2 teaspoons sugar
3 tablespoons nonfat milk
3 teaspoons cider vinegar
1/2 teaspoon salt
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Place the pecans in a small, dry skillet over medium heat. Toast, stirring occasionally, until the nuts are fragrant and just beginning to brown. Watch carefully so you don’t burn them. Set aside to cool, then chop coarsely.
Cut off the broccoli stems and discard or shred to use in broccoli slaw. Cut away the florets, then cut them into bite-size pieces, a little smaller than you’d cut them for steamed broccoli. Place in a large salad bowl.
Add the chopped, toasted pecans, the cranberries or cherries and the red onion. Toss to mix well.
In a small bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, yogurt, sugar, milk, cider vinegar and salt.
Pour over the salad and toss well to coat everything with the dressing. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
Make-ahead note: You can make this up to 24 hours in advance. The acid in the dressing will keep the broccoli green and crisp.