So this was a fun recipe to try — prepared for a monthly get-together with friends; I seem to have become the ‘salad guy’ of late but I don’t mind at all, as this almost always gives me a chance to use more of my CSA basket than I might normally.
I received the recipe via my CSA newsletter — a couple of variations: I didn’t add any salt (the Roquefort has enough already!) and instead of candying the pecans I simply bought some prepared but unsalted fragments. Meanwhile I only used one tablespoon of sherry vinegar and smaller amounts of the sugar and mustard in the dressing. While this reduced the full taste range of the dish on the one hand, on the other I felt it was a better balance as well as being a bit healthier.
• 1 head leaf lettuce, torn into bite-size pieces
• 3 pears – peeled, cored and chopped
• 5 ounces Roquefort cheese, crumbled
• 1 avocado – peeled, pitted, and diced
• 1/2 cup thinly sliced green onions
• 1/4 cup white sugar
• 1/2 cup pecans
• 1/3 cup olive oil
• 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
• 1 1/2 teaspoons white sugar
• 1 1/2 teaspoons prepared mustard
• 1 clove garlic, chopped
• 1/2 teaspoon salt
• fresh ground black pepper to taste
1. In a skillet over medium heat, stir 1/4 cup of sugar together with the pecans. Continue stirring gently until sugar has melted and caramelized the pecans. Carefully transfer nuts onto waxed paper. Allow to cool, and break into pieces.
2. For the dressing, blend oil, vinegar, 1 1/2 teaspoons sugar, mustard, chopped garlic, salt, and pepper.
3. In a large serving bowl, layer lettuce, pears, blue cheese, avocado, and green onions. Pour dressing over salad, sprinkle with pecans, and serve.