Nana Recipe Wednesday–Almond Salad

by Sarah on July 23, 2014

Undercover Caterer :: Nana's Almond Salad

I can’t believe I haven’t made this salad already.  Somehow I’d never seen the card.  It has all the qualities I like in a recipe.  1) It’s easy.  2) I don’t really have to cook anything.  3) It’s easy.  4) It involves both fruit and vegetables.  5) It’s easy.  6) It tastes good.

Undercover Caterer :: Nana's Almond Salad

I know, what kind of half-assed blogger am I that only wants easy and no-cooking recipes?  I kid, I kid, you people know I like to cook.  Just sometimes I don’t.  I’ve been working a lot, traveling a lot and sometimes you just want to eat a bowl of iceberg lettuce.

Totally off topic:  Look at this gem I found while visiting Auntie Anne!  Nana, Boppa (nice face, dude) and some other random couple in VEGAS.  Or TAHOE.  I REALLY HAVE NO IDEA.  I ALSO HAVE NO IDEA WHY I’M TYPING IN CAPS.  I wasn’t yelling at you, I promise.  Looks like someone won big.  I hope Nana made her pay for the dinner.

Undercover Caterer :: Nana's Almond Salad

I mean, really, The Arabian Room can’t be cheap.  Ooh, and look, it WAS VEGAS!

Undercover Caterer :: Nana's Almond Salad

Man that is super-cool-neato.  I have no idea why this aesthetic ever went away.  This gorgeous space ship was of course, demolished.  And how do I know that you ask?  Because here is old Aladin’s lamp (Yes, old Aladin was featured at The Dunes), languishing at the Neon Boneyard. I took this picture when we went to Vegas a few years ago for my birthday.

Undercover Caterer :: Nana's Almond Salad

And here is our 2010 version of the photo above, though I think I look a little drunker than Nana (but maybe not Boppa, from the look of his photo).  We were at The Golden Steer, since the Arabian Room was no longer available.

Undercover Caterer :: Nana's Almond Salad

SORRY!  Back to salad.  I am easily distracted, especially when it come to cool old stuff.

Right.  Almond salad.  I don’t know why she called it that, except for that it features candied almonds.  Nana could’ve easily called it ‘grape salad’ or ‘mandarin orange salad’–it all the same amount of ingredients.  I guess grape or mandarin orange salad sounds kind of like Jell-o.

Undercover Caterer :: Nana's Almond Salad

Seriously, reading my rambling probably took longer than it is going to take you to make this.  You quickly candy the almonds on the stove top, whisk up the dressing and pour it over your greens, grapes, oranges and other random ingredients.  I think it would be swell to put some shredded chicken in here.

Undercover Caterer :: Nana's Almond Salad

My recommendation?  Make this while there’s still some summer left.  It’s nice and refreshing.  It would probably be a great take-along potluck type salad too.

Undercover Caterer :: Nana's Almond Salad

And don’t forget, whatever happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas.  Even for Nana.  But apparently not for me–I have no shame.

Nana's Almond Salad


  • 1 small head iceberg lettuce, outer leaves removed and the remainder shredded
  • 4 green onions, sliced thin
  • 2 Tbsp minced fresh parsley
  • 1 1/2 cup celery, sliced thin
  • 1 small can Mandarin oranges, drained
  • 1 cup green grapes, halved
  • 1/2 cup crystallized almonds
  • 1/2 cup slivered or sliced almonds
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • freshly ground pepper
  • 2 tsp paprika
  • 2 Tbsp sugar
  • 1/4 cup salad oil
  • 2 Tbsp vinegar (I used cider)
  • 1/2 tsp dry mustard
  • 2 Tbsp honey
  • 1 tsp lemon juice


  • Whisk together dressing ingredients and set aside.
  • Make almonds: Stir the almonds and sugar in a small saute pan over medium heat till sugar melts and nuts are browned slightly. Remove from heat and let cool.
  • Combine all salad ingredients. (At this point, you may cover and refrigerate if making in advance or for taking to a potluck).
  • When ready to serve, combine salad ingredients with almonds and enough dressing to coat lightly. Taste and add more dressing or ground pepper to taste.
  • Serve immediately.

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