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!
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
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
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.