I told you I got a FLAT of pears!!!
Now that we are empty nesters, The professor and I do a very decadent thing. We go to Longo's and get an especially wonderful salad. It has baby spinach leaves, red onion, pear slices, bleu cheese, and a sprinkle of "craisins" for a touch of sweetness. They almost always have it in their ready made-up-salad section and we almost always get it when we see it. If you have a plethora of pears to use up you can always have a do-it-yourself salad fest and make this oldie but goodie from Marion Kane in the Toronto Star....years ago.
Salad with Pecans, Blue Cheese, and Pears
Marion says: "A flavour-packed salad that looks as good as it tastes. Smith uses Late Harvest Riesling vinegar for the dressing but raspberry, sherry or the yummy fig with lemon version I found at Loblaws will do. This makes extra dressing; store in the fridge in airtight container. you can substitute a crisp, tart apple for pear."
½ cup pecan halves
1 Tbsp maple or corn syrup
1 Tbsp mayonnaise
2 Tbsp Dijon mustard
1 garlic clove, minced
¼ cup fruit vinegar [raspberry is great]
1 cup extra virgin olive oil
Salt and Pepper to taste
2 heads Boston lettuce [these days I'd use baby spinach or mesclun mix]
2 oz (50g) blue cheese crumbled
1 ripe Anjou pear, peeled, cored, cut in matchsticks
Preheat oven to 350F.
Spread pecans on baking sheet. Bake about 5 minutes. Transfer to bowl. Add maple or corn syrup. Stir to coat. Return to oven 5 minutes. Cool.
In bowl, whisk together mayonnaise, mustard, garlic, vinegar and olive oil until blended. Add salt and pepper.
Remove tough outer leaves of lettuce; discard. Wash and dry inner leaves; tear into bite-sized pieces. Place in large salad bowl. Just before serving, add only enough dressing to coat lettuce; toss. Sprinkle with pecans, cheese and pears.
Makes 4 to 6 servings.