home cooked dinners by the season

Pear Spinach Salad with Honey Vinaigrette

Pear Spinach Salad with Honey Vinaigrette

img_2769 Many people shy away from buying pears because of the frustration of not knowing when they are ripe to eat. I did the same thing until I learned the secret to knowing just when they are ready. It’s just a gently push on the stem end to see if it gives a little. That’s it and it works every time. Unlike an apple, a pear usually takes a few days at home to ripen so you need to plan to buy them a few days ahead of when you want to eat them. This is because pears bruise easily, so they are better when picked while still hard. And unlike most fruit, they improve in texture and flavor after they are picked. I usually allow two to three days at room temperature.

There are over 5,000 varieties of pears grown throughout the world. I can’t say I have eaten more then 15 different varieties and my favorite is the Anjou. Commonly referred to by its French name D’Anjou, I prefer it for its subtle sweetness and light citrus flavor. Its dense flesh also holds up well when sliced and used in salads. It’s just now coming in season.

I am still craving lighter food for dinner and definitely something that goes together in 30 minutes or less. You’ll get both with this salad, as well as healthy eating.

Pear Spinach Salad with Honey Vinaigrette
 
Serves: 4 to 5 servings
Ingredients
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped shallot (1-1/2 teaspoons finely chopped garlic can be substituted)
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon
  • ⅓ cup olive oil
  • Kosher salt
  • Fresh ground black pepper
  • 10 ounces cleaned spinach leaves (two 5 ounce packages) or 16 cups
  • 2 ripe pears, cored, quartered and sliced
  • 4 slices bacon, cooked and roughly chopped
  • 4 ounces crumbled goat cheese
Instructions
  1. For the honey vinaigrette, whisk together red wine vinegar, shallot, honey and dijon. Whisk in olive oil until smooth, then season with salt and pepper (makes ½ cup).
  2. Toss spinach with honey vinaigrette. Add pears, bacon and goat cheese and toss gently, just enough to evenly distribute ingredients.


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8 thoughts on “Pear Spinach Salad with Honey Vinaigrette”

  • Hello – Reading your comments, make me want to see your face 😉 Love your “Table ” and eager to see it.
    I’m 85 & still sometimes love to cook. My husband is also a good cook 😉 I started out helping my mother in Eastern Washington on a Wheat & cattle ranch. At 15, I cooked for the harvest hands / & family as my Mom had a baby. It was an all day job – as in a Thanksgiving. Every Day. It was much easier driving wheat trucks. I flew small planes from age 14 to college.

    Lived in Seattle many years, psychotherapist & etc. Thanks for your delightful offerings !!

    Jo Terry

    • Jo:

      Thank you so much for taking the time to comment on my blog. I love hearing your story! And that you still sometimes like to cook. What an honor to have you as a reader.

      Sincerely,

      Linda

  • I so enjoy your recipes and stories. I have a problem printing you recipes as they are much too light. Any chance you could do them in bold so they would could be readable? I would greatly appreciate that. I do not join Facebook or Pinterest so this is my only option. Thanks so much.

    • Thank you Carol. I will check it out and let you know what I find out. My font is a charcoal and not black so that might be why.

  • You are soooo creative. The spinach salad receipt is the best…Looking forward to many more helpful hints on how to make food special…

    • Thank you for taking the time to comment on my Spinach Salad blog post and for your very kind words. I am glad you are enjoying the recipes.

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