Start to finish: 40 minutes (20 active)
1 very ripe small pear, peeled, cored and sliced 1/2-inch thick (it should measure 2/3-3/4 cup sliced), plus 2 firm ripe pears (preferably red)
1/3 cup distilled white vinegar
2 teaspoons honey
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
2 1/2 tablespoons walnut oil
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
8 cups loosely packed watercress, arugula or greens of your choice
1/2 cup chopped toasted walnuts
4 ounces crumbled Gorgonzola Dolce, Roquefort, or blue cheese of your choice
In a small saucepan combine the sliced pear, vinegar, honey and salt; bring to a boil. Simmer until the mixture is reduced to 2/3 cup. Let cool slightly, transfer the mixture to a blender and blend until smooth. Add the oil and pepper; pulse one or two times. Taste and add additional salt and pepper if desired.
Core the remaining pears and slice thin. In a large bowl drizzle the watercress with some of the pear dressing and toss well. Mound one-eighth of the salad on each of eight plates and top each portion with the walnuts, Gorgonzola Dolce and sliced pears.
Nutrition information per serving: 170 calories; 112 calories from fat; 12 g fat (4 g saturated; 0 g trans fats); 13 mg cholesterol; 261 mg sodium; 11 g carbohydrates; 3 g fiber; 7 g sugar; 5 g protein.
Sara Moulton, Associated Press