a sweet & salty salad full of arugula, spring mix, roasted apples, olive oil fried pecans, bacon, blue cheese, raisins, and a caramelized shallot vinaigrette
6 oz raw, sliced bacon
2 red delicious apples, thinly sliced
1 cup pecans
2 shallots, thinly sliced
2 tbsp maple syrup
2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
¼ cup + 2 tbsp neutral-flavored oil
freshly cracked black pepper
5 oz (1 container) arugula
5 oz (1 container) spring mix
6 oz blue cheese (1 sm wedge), crumbled
¾ cup raisins
Preheat the oven to 425°F. Lay the bacon out onto a sheet pan. Bake for 15-18 minutes, or until crisp. Transfer the bacon to a plate lined with paper towels and set aside. Pour 2 tablespoons of the hot bacon fat into a 12″ skillet. Leave the remaining on the sheet pan.
Add the sliced apples to the sheet pan, spreading them in one even layer. Roast the apples in the bacon fat for 10 minutes. Give the apples a flip and roast for another 5 minutes, or until golden. Set aside.
Meanwhile, heat the 12″ skillet over medium heat. Add the pecans and toast until golden and fragrant. Season with a pinch of salt. Spoon the pecans out onto a plate lined with paper towels.
Add the shallots and a pinch of salt to the skillet. Drizzle a little olive oil in if needed. Sauté for a few minutes until the shallots are caramelized and softened. Add the maple syrup and apple cider vinegar. Whisk to combine. Let simmer for 30 seconds or so. Transfer this mixture to a mixing bowl and let cool for a few minutes. Slowly drizzle in the neutral-flavored oil until emulsified. Season with salt and freshly cracked black pepper to taste (you want the vinaigrette to be very well seasoned).
Add the arugula and spring mix to a large mixing bowl. Add the roasted apples, pecans, bacon (crumbled), blue cheese, and raisins. Toss well and drizzle in the vinaigrette until your desired consistency.
Taste the salad and season with more salt and freshly cracked black pepper if needed. Serve immediately.