Classic combination of ingredients, cheeseboard favourites transformed in salad form with the addition of pepper rocket lettuce!Ideal to serve as a starter, light lunch or as a side for a main that's not too rich.We go light on the dressing here because the blue cheese and juice from the pears act as part of the dressing. See Note 1 for my recommende blue cheeses.
Course: Side Salad
Keyword: blue cheese salad, pear and blue cheese salad, pear salad
Servings: 5- 6 as a side
1 1/2 - 2pears, any type, juicy and ripe (or nashi pears or sweet apples)
3/4cupwalnuts, whole (sub almonds, pecans)
120g / 4ozrocket/arugula lettuce
120g / 4 ozroquefort, gorgonzola, stilton or other good blue cheese, creamy but can be crumbled into chunks (Note 1)
Honey Mustard Dressing:
1 1/2tbspDijon mustard
1 1/2tbspcider vinegar
1 1/2tbspvegetable or olive oil
Dressing: Shake Dressing in a jar.
Pears: Halve then scoop out core. Place cut face down and slice into 3mm / 0.12" slices. (Note 2)
Walnuts: Spread on tray and toast in a 180°C/350°F oven for 8 minutes or until they smell nutty. Leave some whole, break some in half with hands.
Dress rocket: In a large bowl, toss rocket with 2 tbsp Dressing.
Assemble: Pile 1/3 rocket on a platter. Scatter with 1/3 pears, 1/3 walnuts, 1/3 blue cheese crumbled into small chunks. Repeat twice more. Drizzle with remaining Dressing just before serving.
1. Blue cheese - Look for a blue that is creamy so it sticks to the salad but still firm enough to crumble into chunks with your fingers (though your fingers will be smeared with blue cheese!). Blue brie is too creamy, cheddar-like ones are too hard - they just end up at bottom of bowl.My favourite (in order): Roquefort (other French blues I like: St Agur, Fourme d’Ambert), Gorgonzola Piccante, Gorgonzola Dolce, good British Stilton. For a good value option, opt for a Danish. If you're blue cheese-shy, Blue Castello is a safe bet - very mild.Generally with cheese, you get what you pay for.2. Slicing pears - The slices should not be paper thin, or even so thin they completely "flop". They should have a slight bend when picked up with a fork, as pictured in post. But they should not be so thick that they crack when you stab with a fork!Amount to use: 1 1/2 pears is the perfect amount to me for the specified amount of rocket. If you want a more pear forward salad, use more.Stop pears browning: If not assembling in 30 min, drizzle lightly with lemon juice to stop them from going brown.