By Cat, June 2008 (Photo, right, from Wikimedia Commons)
This salad has been showing up at trendy restaurants in the last few years. It may sound strange to put pear slices on a lettuce salad — it’s a fruit, after all. But then, remember that tomatoes and cucumbers are also fruit, and then it doesn’t seem so strange. Plus, the pears go wonderfully with the nuts and cheese.
Lettuce, Pear and Nut Salad
This salad has been showing up at trendy restaurants in the last few years. It may sound strange to put pear slices on a lettuce salad — it’s a fruit, after all. But then, remember that tomatoes and cucumbers are also fruit, and then it doesn’t seem so strange.
You can use any type of lettuce leaves; I rather like red leaf lettuce mixed with a bit of young greens or spinach. Romaine is also nice.
I love the taste of dried cherries, but many people like to use dried cranberries. Just be sure to find crans sweetened with apple juice instead of sugar.
For the goat cheese, I prefer Montrachet or Chevre, but a mild feta or gorgonzola will also work well. If you make this with apples instead of pears, Stilton cheese is perfect, or any blue cheese can be used.
Serves 3 – 4
Ingredients & Equipment:
- 6 – 8 cups lettuce leaves or mixed greens, torn into bite size pieces
- 1 pears
- ½ cup dried cherries or other fruit
- ½ cup chopped pecans or walnuts
- ¼ cup goat cheese, crumbled
- Balsamic vinaigrette such as Basil-Balsamic Vinaigrette
- 3 – 4 salad plates
Method & Assembly:
- Prepare dressing a few hours before serving. Place in cool spot for flavors to merge.
- Wash, pat dry, and tear greens to bite-size pieces.
- Scrub pear; peel if desired. Cut in half and core. Slice each half into 12 thin wedges. Dip in lemon water to prevent browning.
- Chop fruit and nuts.
- Assembly: Arrange greens on individual salad plates, about 2 cups per serving.
- Arrange pear wedges in a pinwheel pattern over the lettuce.
- Sprinkle chopped fruit and nuts over, then crumble cheese on top.
- Drizzle dressing over all.