Blue cheese divides the crowd. You either love it or hate it.
I’m a blue cheese fan myself. I love it on a cheese board paired with some truffle honey and seem to use it in salads a lot as well. In this salad, the blue cheese goes beautifully with the bitterness of the walnuts and the sweet pear. It is such a simple dish to throw together – the perfect accompaniment to some roast pork belly and mashed potato.
My go-to salad, I made this the other night when friends were over for dinner. Apart from the steak tartare entree courtesy of the O’hares, this was the dish of the night. Not that it had much competition mind you, considering I completely forgot about the pork belly in the oven. Crispy crackling? More like charcoal crackling. Whoops.
Now the key to making delicious fancy salads is to have some nice olive oil and a bottle of finishing vinegar in the cupboard. You’ll be able to whip up any number of interesting salads in a couple of minutes with a drizzle of both over the top. Saves you having to make a salad dressing too. I love the red wine liqueur vinegar from Pukara Estate.
This salad has only 5 ingredients but is packed with flavour, takes next to no time to make and works well teamed up with some roasted or grilled meat for a nice dinner.
And if you do fall in to the ‘anti blue cheese’ category, it’s a shame. You’re missing out on something good here.
salad of pear + walnut + blue cheese (serves 4 as a side dish)
Mixed salad leaves
1 x firm pear, cut in to matchsticks
1 x small wedge of blue cheese
A handful of walnuts
Juice of 1/2 a lemon
A drizzle of olive oil
A drizzle of red wine liqueur vinegar (or caramelised balsamic vinegar)
Salt and freshly cracked pepper
- Place the pear and lemon juice in a small bowl and toss together. Set aside.
- Place the salad leaves in a shallow salad bowl.
- Sprinkle the walnuts over the top.
- Sprinkle the pear over the top.
- Break up the blue cheese and sprinkle over the top.
- Dress with a drizzle of olive oil and vinegar. Season with salt and pepper from a height.
- You can have the pear cut up ahead of time resting in the lemon juice so that it doesn’t go brown. Make sure you throw the salad together at the last minute before serving though as you don’t want the blue cheese out of the fridge for too long and don’t want the walnuts to go soggy.
- Make sure you use a really hard pear. You don’t want it too ripe as it won’t hold together nicely and I like the crunch a slightly underripe pear brings to this salad.
- You could use plain rocket instead of the mixed salad leaves but Cork Daddy doesn’t go much on it, hence the mesclun leaves instead.
If you make this salad, please comment below. xx