Fuji Apple & Avocado Salad with Pecans

My mom made this refreshing salad often when I was growing up; I’m not sure where she got the inspiration, because the ingredients are hardly typical of Italian cooking, but it was one of my favorites as a child. It takes just a few minutes of work (mostly scooping the avocado out of its skin) and delivers surprising flavor: the sweet, juicy apple plays off the rich, creamy avocado beautifully, and the pecans tie the two elements together.

Serve the salad within an hour of tossing it, or else the avocado will darken and the flavors meld rather than remain distinct. If you have any leftovers (doubtful), lay a piece of plastic wrap directly over the salad to prevent darkening.

Serves 2

  • 1 Fuji apple, peel on, quartered and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1 avocado, pitted and cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 garlic clove, grated on a Microplane
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup pecans, coarsely chopped

In a large bowl, gently mix all the ingredients. Taste and adjust the seasoning if needed. Refrigerate up to 1 hour prior to serving.