Sunday, December 6, 2009

Mulled Pear Salad with Blue Cheese Dressing

Mulled pears? I have been known to enjoy mulled wine, but pears, never! It sounded like something we would enjoy. It could be that special dish for a meal. You know, the one that is more complicated than the others on the menu or the one that is different and special because you are desperate to find a new recipe for pears that didn't involve fruit salad or dessert! Yep, that's it. Pears that are not in fruit salad and not upside down in a cake or on top in a beautiful tart...there comes a time when calories make a difference!

We have been getting an abundance of pears in our produce box and that is what led me in search of something different. I found a recipe in the magazine, Delicious. I was not disappointed in the selection. I really like Blue Cheese and the combination of ingredients was appealing to me....baby greens, pears, wine, nuts, blue cheese. Yum!


Mulled Pear Salad with Blue Cheese Dressing
(adapted from Delicious Magazine)

Serves 6

1 Tbsp red wine vinegar
1/4 cup walnut oil
2/3 cup creme fraiche
7 oz Gorgonzola cheese
4 cups baby salad greens (mesclun)
1 cup toasted walnuts, chopped

Mulled Pears
6 small pears (not overly ripe), quartered, cored
1 1/4 cup fruity wine, such as Merlot
1 1/4 cup water
1/3 cup sugar
2 tsp vanilla
1 cinnamon stick
4 whole cloves

Place pears (snugly) in a pan. Pour wine, sugar, vanilla, spices and water over the pears. Cover the surface with a sheet of parchment. Bring to a simmer over medium-high hear, then cook for 10-15 minutes until tender.

Remove pears from liquid and set aside. Simmer liquid until reduced by half.

Pour the liquid over the pears and allow them to steep until ready to be served (Pears may be prepared up to 24 hours in advance).

Whisk vinegar, oil and 2-3 Tbsp wine mixture in a bowl. Season, then set the vinaigrette aside.

For Gorgonzola dressing, warm the creme fraiche and half the Gorgonzola in a small pan over low hear for 2-3 minutes, stirring until smooth.

Toss leaves and walnuts with vinaigrette, then divide among plates. Top with pears, crumble remaining blue cheese over the top. Serve with warm blue cheese dressing in small individual containers to pour at the table.

PRINTABLE RECIPE

The combination of flavors in this salad is wonderful. It is a recipe I wouldn't want to misplace!

25 comments:

  1. At first glance, I thought they were beets! What a wonderful combination of flavors!

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  2. This salad looks fantastic! Great idea with the pears!

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  3. This sounds really wonderful! Your photos are gorgeous.

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  4. Guess what? They are SOAKING as I write:)

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  5. Monique! That is wonderful! I hope you like it as much as we did.

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  6. This salad looks delicious. I bet the pears smelled so good while they were cooking.

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  7. Very interesting use of pears. This salad is so beautiful to look at. Will have to try it.

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  8. sweet, spiced pears, crunchy nuts, and salty, creamy cheese--you're right, this salad has it all. delicious.

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  9. I love pears and Gorgonzola - I have to try this one!

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  10. Had something similar for lunch at a restaurant recently, except they added chicken and did not mull the pears. Love the idea of mulling pears. This is such a great combination!

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  11. I would love it! I really enjoy pears in salads.
    Did you see the vertical red pear salad I did a few weeks ago? Perfect for the holidays!

    Hope you have been well, Kate.
    We have had some hectic times of late..I have to catch up on your posts!

    Come see the cute cookie cutter I got from WSonoma outlet. You can imprint a name!

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  12. What a beautiful salad! I love the idea of mulled pears. Looks and sounds delicious -

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  13. that looks fantastic! thanks for the recipe.

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  14. Perfect during holiday time...or any time for that matter...beautiful colors...thanks Kate!

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  15. Mom -- why so quiet? We need another recipe!

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  16. 'Tis the season dear daughter. Next post is 100!

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  17. Pears and blue cheese--food of the gods! This is on my 'to do' list! It looks amazing. Thanks for posting this!

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  18. i love gorgonzola. now im hungry!

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  19. Such a lovely salad! I imagine the mulled pears and blue cheese taste amazing together!

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  20. This is intriguing! What a gorgeous salad for a holiday meal! Love your photos!

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  21. I love pears and blue cheese together. Yummy!

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  22. Love mulled pears and they add such a gorgeous color to any dish!

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  23. Kathy, the mulled pear salad with blue cheese dressing looks wonderful. I agree with Mary and Shari, your photos are "gorgeous"!

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