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Artichoke and Spinach Caesar Salad

Artichoke and Spinach Caesar Salad

Homemade pita squares make the perfect croutons for this fiber-rich salad with a Mediterranean twist.

Ingredients:

PITA SQUARES

1 5-inch whole-wheat pita pocket, separated into 2 layers and cut into ½-inch pieces
Olive oil spray
¼ teaspoon garlic powder
½ teaspoon shredded or grated Parmesan cheese

DRESSING

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon shredded or grated Parmesan cheese
2 teaspoons olive oil (extra-virgin preferred)
2 teaspoons red wine vinegar
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce (lowest sodium)
1 medium garlic clove, minced
½ teaspoon dry mustard
¼ teaspoon pepper

SALAD

4 ounces baby spinach
½ cup thinly sliced red onion
½ 15¾-ounce can (about ¾ cup) quartered artichoke hearts, rinsed, well drained, and leaves separated
3 ounces button mushrooms, sliced (about ¾ cup)

Directions:

1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. On a nonstick baking sheet, place the pita pieces with the rough side up. Lightly spray with olive oil spray. Sprinkle with the garlic powder and ½ teaspoon Parmesan. Bake for 10 minutes, or until crisp.
2. Transfer the baking sheet to a cooling rack. Set aside and let the squares cool. Meanwhile, in a blender or mini food processor, process the dressing ingredients until smooth.
3. In a large bowl, toss together the spinach and onion. Add the artichokes and mushrooms. Toss well. Pour the dressing over all. Toss lightly. Sprinkle with the pita squares. Serve immediately for the best texture.

Servings: 4