Sliced pears, cheese, cranberries, and walnuts are the ideal accent to your Christmas feast in this winter pear salad with a tangy and sweet balsamic dressing.
During the holiday season, there are always a lot of sweets and heartier main courses. In order to balance things out, it might be helpful to serve a lighter Salads like this plain yet tasty salad. The colorful and simple Winter Pear Salad is ideal for a Christmas or New Year’s Eve celebration. Try our Chicken Avocado Pasta Salad for another fantastic salad made with in-season fruit.
WINTER PEAR SALAD
Pears that are perfectly ripe are quite delightful. They are utterly seductive due to their naturally sweet flavor and creamy, velvety, but crisp texture. The best way to enjoy them is in this seasonal salad when the fruit is at its peak. Although you can buy pears all year long at the grocery store, the best time to buy them is in the fall and winter when they are at their sweetest and tartest.
Because winter pears don’t fully mature until after they are harvested, they differ slightly from other fruit in this regard. The pears need 3–4 weeks in the refrigerator after being plucked from the tree to reach their maturity peak. The pears will then be ideal for this gorgeous winter salad. Gently press on the fruit’s neck to determine whether the pears you are purchasing are ripe. Pears are ripe when they start to yield slightly. You should keep them chilled at home until they are fully matured if they are hard.
To enhance the great salad and the pears, we’ve added a range of tastes and textures. The goat cheese, cranberries, and sweet candied walnuts are all arranged over a plain bed of lush greens. A tart vinaigrette is then drizzled on top of the pear salad to give it a zesty touch.
TIPS FOR THE PERFECT WINTER SALAD
- Pears:Preparing the pears is the first step in this recipe. Make sure your pears are ripe first. Then cut off the center of each one’s halves before slicing them into thin pieces. Slices of pears should be placed in a dish with fresh lemon juice on top. This simple technique will prevent them from browning while they sit outside.
- Salad: Pull out your salad bowl next. The base should now have the layer of winter salad leaves. The pears, cranberries, crisp walnuts, and a sprinkling of cheese should then be added on top.
- Dressing:The fresh ingredients in this dish are its finest feature, so it only makes sense to prepare your own fresh salad dressing to go with it. It comes out far more tasty than a store-bought vinaigrette and is easy to make. Simply combine in a separate bowl the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, mustard, honey, garlic, salt, and pepper. After that, mix the dressing in the bowl by whisking it. Just before serving, drizzle the vinaigrette over the salad.
VARIATIONS ON WINTER PEAR SALAD
- Dressing:The beautiful thing about this recipe’s dressing is that it can be used as the basis for a variety of salads. A simple approach to alter the lovely salad is to play about with the dressing’s components. Whisk in 2 teaspoons poppy seeds, 3 tablespoons lemon juice, and 3 tablespoons lemon zest for a lemon and poppy seed dressing with a wonderful sour taste. You may swap out the balsamic vinegar with apple cider vinegar if you want a more acidic cider dressing. Add additional honey to taste to make the salad a little bit sweeter, or add some dark brown sugar for a more intense sweetness.
- Cheese: In place of goat cheese, you might experiment with a range of other cheeses on your crisp winter salad. It would taste fantastic with blue cheese, feta cheese, Swiss cheese, or mozzarella.
- Add-ins: This salad is a great place to experiment with a variety of wonderful add-ins. You may substitute other nuts for walnuts or simply include the additional nuts with the candied walnuts. You could consume pistachios, pecans, or almonds. Add some more fruit, such as kiwi, raisins, pomegranate seeds, or orange slices.
- ▢3 pears
- ▢2 tablespoons lemon juice
- ▢10 ounces salad greens
- ▢1/2 cup sweetened dried cranberries
- ▢1/2 cup candied walnuts
- ▢1/2 cup goat cheese , crumbled
- 2/3 cup olive oil
- 1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 2 teaspoons honey
- 1 clove garlic , finely minced
- 1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon coarse ground black pepper
- Cut the pears in half, core, and thinly slice.
- Add to a bowl and coat with lemon juice to prevent browning.
- In a serving bowl layer lettuce, pears, cranberries, walnuts, and goat cheese.
- Whisk together olive oil, balsamic vinegar, dijon mustard, honey, garlic, salt, and pepper until well blended and set immediately dress the salad.
Calories: 318kcal | Carbohydrates: 24g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 24g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 7mg | Sodium: 263mg | Potassium: 167mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 17g | Vitamin A: 568IU | Vitamin C: 13mg | Calcium: 41mg | Iron: 1mg