Healthy Holidays… Salad All Winter with Chef Cliff Pleau


Chef Cliff Pleau shares a delicious healthy Holiday Salad with hydroponic salad with Bloom Guest Host Pam Smith, RDN.

Winter Holiday Salad Recipe

2-3 heads Kalera Hydroponic Lettuce, Frisee & Krunch

1 cup roasted butternut squash

½ cup Spiced Pecans, recipe follows

12 naval or Kara Kara orange segments

2 Tbs. pomegranate seeds (arils)

½ cup Feta cheese, lightly frozen for flaking

½ cup Meyer Lemon-Pear Vinaigrette, recipe follows

4 Roasted Bosc Pears, recipe follows

Pomegranate molasses or syrup, optional


  1. Gather, measure and prep all ingredients. Place a small block of feta in the freezer.
  2. Remove root from the Kalera Lettuces; place greens in a large bowl.
  3. Add roasted squash, Spiced Pecans, orange segments and pomegranate seeds.
  4. Spoon Meyer lemon-pear vinaigrette around ingredients on the sides of the bowl.
  5. Gently combine mixing all together and portion salad onto serving plates.
  6. Garnish with the Roasted Bosc Pears.
  7. Flake feta over the top of each salad using a grater.
  8. Option: drizzle with pomegranate molasses or syrup to garnish.

Roasted Bosc Pears

4 whole Bosc pears

1½ teaspoons extra virgin olive oil

¼ teaspoon Kosher salt

teaspoon fresh ground pepper


  1. Preheat oven to 425°F.
  2. Wash pears and cut them into six wedges, lengthwise. 
  3. Pat dry.  Toss pears with olive oil, salt and pepper in bowl. 
  4. Lay pears on baking sheet pan skin-side down, cut-side up.
  5. Roast pears in 425° oven for 15 minutes, and then rotate sheet pan. 
  6. Continue cooking 15 minutes until soft and caramelized. 
  7. Remove from oven and serve as an accompaniment to salad
  8. Top with chutney, cranberry relish or pomegranate molasses for an added holiday touch.

Sweet n’ Spicy Pecans

Makes 4 cups nuts.

4 cups pecan halves

2 large egg whites

1/3 cup sugar in the raw (or light brown sugar)

1-2 teaspoons of your favorite hot sauce, such as Cholula

2 teaspoons Chai seasoning (or 1 teaspoon cinnamon)

2 teaspoons creole seasoning


  1. Heat the oven to 325 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. Whisk the egg whites, sugar, hot sauce and spices together in a large bowl.  Add the pecans and toss to coat. 
  3. Transfer the nuts to the prepared baking sheet and smooth out to one layer.
  4. Bake until nuts are fragrant and have a deep molasses-brown tint, 30-32 minutes, stirring every 8 minutes.
  5. Remove nuts from the oven. While the nuts are still hot and sticky, use two forks to pry them apart.  Let them cool on the pan, and serve immediately or store in an airtight container for up to 1 month.

Meyer Lemon Pear Vinaigrette

½ cup Meyer lemon juice, fresh squeezed

1Tablespoon lemon zest

1 fresh shallot, minced

½ cup extra virgin olive oil

½ cup white balsamic vinegar

1 cup pear pulp, peeled and shredded on box grater

¼ cup Dijon mustard

¼ cup honey

Sea salt & freshly ground black pepper, to taste


  1. Zest Meyer lemon and squeeze fresh juice into a small bowl.
  2. Peel pears and grate pulp; combine pear with lemon.
  3. Add all other ingredients.
  4. Whisk well to combine.

Bloom airs in 40 markets across the country, with a reach of approximately 36 million households, and in Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands and Madison, WI.

You can watch Bloom in the Tampa Bay Market weekdays at Noon on WTTA: Spectrum 1006; Frontier 514; DirecTV 38; Dish 38; Comcast 43, and look for Bloom early mornings on WFLA News Channel 8.

Copyright 2022 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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