Heirloom Apple Salad

Heirloom Apple Salad Recipe

I'm off to New York this week, and thought I would leave you with this Heirloom Apple Salad recipe from the archives. It's the sort of salad that works this time of year, and you likely have the ingredients needed sprinkled about your kitchen - on counter tops, or in the crisper. It's hearty and substantial, colorful and crunchy - made with heirloom apples, shaved celery, and toasted nuts of your choosing. The dressing is crème fraîche spiked with rosemary, garlic and champagne vinegar - you could use sour cream or even yogurt.

The original recipe was posted just after our basement flooded a few years back. Come to think of it, that was one of the last times it rained :( !! And a heartfelt word of thanks to all of you who have come out to my book events in the past few weeks. It means a lot, and (no surprise) you're all such inspiring individuals. I'm thankful to be able to spend a few minutes with each of you! -h

Heirloom Apple Salad RecipeHeirloom Apple Salad Recipe

Think of this more as a sketch than anything else. I used arugula because it's what I had on hand, but the baby gems at the market looked great and would have been a nice substitute. Same goes for the nuts, toast whatever you have on hand - pine nuts, almonds, or walnuts. And the dressing should by no means be limited to this recipe - it's decadent drizzled over roasted potatoes and sweet potatoes, as a finishing kiss for mushrooms, or as a slather on panini.

Heirloom Apple Salad RecipeHeirloom Apple Salad Recipe

Heirloom Apple Salad

A bit of hard, aged cheese is welcome here as well - shave of thin strips and add toward the end.

1/4 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
12 rosemary leaves, minced (the spiky needles)
1 medium garlic clove, peeled
1 teaspoon sugar
1/2 cup /120 ml crème fraîche (or sour cream)
2 1/2 teaspoons white wine vinegar
freshly ground black pepper to taste

3 large celery stalks, sliced see-though thin (reserve any celery leaves)

2 crisp, flavorful heirloom apples, cut into sixths, and then thinly sliced*

4 handfuls arugula, baby gems, or baby romaine

1/3 cup toasted hazelnuts, walnuts, almonds, or pine nuts

Make the dressing first. Crush the sea salt, rosemary, garlic, and sugar into a paste with a mortar and pestle (or smash it all together with a knife). Work in the creme fraiche and vinegar, taste and adjust with a bit of pepper and more salt if needed.

When you're ready to serve, combine the celery, apples, salad greens, and most of the nuts with a few half of the dressing. Toss well, adding more dressing until it is to your liking. Finish with the remaining nuts, and any torn celery leaves.

Serves 4-6.

* If you're not going to use the apples immediately keep them in a bowl of water spiked with a bit of lemon juice (or the white wine vinegar you're using for the dressing). Drain and pat dry before using.

Prep time: 7 minutes

If you make this recipe, I'd love to see it - tag it #101cookbooks on Instagram!
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  • i really love to mix fruit with vegetables. When i dont have apples i use pears. It is delicious

    Ana Cooks
  • perfect flavor combo! love the nutty crunch too!

    fig + fauna
  • So sorry about your basement! Hope it all clears up quickly. More time to enjoy this salad!

    Belinda @zomppa
  • Funny thing, I just posted an article on heirloom foods on my blog: talking about coincidences. This salad is just perfect, I'm gonna add a link to this recipe. Btw, do you know what's the name of the variety of apples you used? They almost look like plums. Anyway, so sorry to hear about your basement, hopefully you'll get everything back in order soon enough.

    HS: Hi Mike, I believe they were Arkansas Black apples.

    Mike @TheIronYou
  • Oh no! Hope no photos were in those boxes :-( All the best with the clean-up, this salad sound amazing and reminds me heaps of a salad my Dad is famed for. xx

    Emma Galloway
  • beautiful dressing. Doestn't sound like salad weather there though : ( All the best with the cleanup.

    adam and Theresa
  • Oh no! I hope you get everything safe a dry just in case it happens again. Has to be such a pain to deal with, but maybe you will find a few things you had forgotten about :)

    Christina @ The Beautiful Balance
  • Oh no! The flooding sounds terrible :( I hope you can sort it all out without too much trouble. On the other hand, that salad looks delicious! Good food always puts a smile on my face, so hopefully it can do the same for you too.

  • Oh no! Floods are the worst! I hope you didn't lose anything too important. This salad looks great, exactly the sort of thing I'm into eating right now. Thanks so much for sharing the recipe!

    Katie (The Muffin Myth)
  • I'm glad you're safe and so sorry to hear about your basement! I had heard there were flood warnings in Sacramento and didn't realize it would be an issue in SF! We got quite a bit of rain in the foothills but thankfully no damage. Good luck and beautiful salad!!

    Julia {The Roasted Root}
  • That salad looks amazing and that dressing sounds perfect! Do you have any idea what that variety of heirloom apple is?...we are always looking for "new" ones to put in at our farm. Good luck with the basement cleanup!!

    HS: HI Kay - I think those were Arkansas black apples.

  • This is such a simple dressing full of flavors. I can smell the aroma :-) Take care with your basement and the weather.

    sangeeta khanna
  • Oh, no! I'm so sorry about the soggy boxes--I hope the clean up isn't too bad. It sounds like it's been unbelievably wet down there, I hope the sun comes back out soon! Take care.

  • Stay dry yourself - more rain is coming! I'm not looking forward to the high tide December 13th.

    Tricia Rose
  • I hope you've managed to sort out your basement! This salad looks beautiful and the light in the photos is amazing as always :)

  • Oh my gosh - that really sucks about your basement! I can't believe you were able to post this recipe despite the flooding - very admirable :) This salad looks delicious, and good luck with everything over the next couple days!

    Anjali @ The Picky Eater
  • Oh no! Good luck! At least you have good food made to keep you going...!

  • Heidi so sorry to hear about your basement. I hope you guys can get back to normal soon. Ugh, not what you needed - at all! The crème fraîche spiked with rosemary, and champagne vinegar dressing sounds sensational! Along with the crisp apples, mmm good!

    Averie @ Averie Cooks
  • So sorry to hear about the basement; wishing you the best of luck. Salad sounds really good - crunchy and fresh!

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