Warm Spinach And Basil Salad
A few years ago a friend introduced me to a salad that's become one of my favorites. It is a warm spinach and basil salad with pine nuts and prosciutto. It is a great first course for a dinner party but also hearty enough to eat alone as a light lunch or dinner.
To get started, wash, rinse, and drain 6 cups of spinach and 2 cups of fresh basil leaves. I always remove any stems and tear larger leaves in half. Toss the prepared spinach and basil in a bowl and set it aside.
In a skillet, combine 1/2 cup of olive oil with 3 cloves of finely chopped or minced garlic and a 1/2 cup of pine nuts. Stirring constantly, saute these ingredients over a medium heat for a few minutes and then add 3/4 of a cup of diced prosciutto or thinly sliced, cooked ham. Continue to saute until pine nuts are a nice toasty brown and the prosciutto is heated through. Pine nuts tend to burn easily so it should take but a few minutes.
Pour this hot mixture over the salad greens and toss.
This recipe is enough for four people, but if you'd like to make more or less of it just remember that it's one part basil leaves to three parts spinach.
Time to prepare: 35 minutes.