For as much as I enjoy finding challenging recipes to try on the weekends when I have more free time, on the weekdays, it’s all about convenience. From slow cookers to yogurts to sandwiches, I try to do as little work as possible, but I still want healthy results. That’s not always an easy combination to achieve. And, I’ll admit, sometimes a simple solution is so obvious that I miss it altogether… and I know I’m not the only one to have an “Aha!” moment followed by a “Duh” moment.
That “Aha… Duh” moment came during Chanukah this year. My family celebrated the fourth night at my aunt and uncle’s house. The delicious food was all set up buffet style in the kitchen, featuring a bowl of salad topped with pears. For those who don’t know, I could eat Anjou pears every day at every meal, so naturally, the salad was the first thing I put on my plate.
It. Was. Amazing.
From the pears to the dressing, gorgonzola to the walnut crumbles, I was in love. I raved about the salad to my aunt’s mom, who admitted she made it a couple hours before arriving because it was simple and easy to transport.
And, for lack of better words, that’s when the “Aha… Duh” moment hit me.
Naturally, the ingredients were all at the top of my grocery list that Sunday. I bought enough pears and ingredients to bring the salad to work every night that following week. I had a giddy feeling of satisfaction each time I pulled the Tupperware lid off the salad around 3 a.m.
I know you might read this and think I’m being way too overenthusiastic about a salad. But I spend so much time reading about fantastic salad recipes that often require a lot of prep work, such as chopping up a lot of vegetables or grilling meat to go on top. And trust me, I love those salads and I enjoy making them when I can take my time. But when you’re yawning, half-asleep and still waiting for that cup of coffee to kick in before you run out the door, who wants to do all that work? I sure don’t. But I also don’t necessarily always want to settle for romaine, croutons, parmesan and caesar dressing either. Plus, I love how I can get some of my daily fruit intake checked off through this dish.
Pear Salad with Champagne Vinaigrette
- 1 Anjou pear (you can also substitute with a sweet apple)
- 1 tbs of crumbled gorgonzola cheese
- 1 tbs of crumbled walnuts
- 1 cup of shredded Romaine
- Champagne Vinaigrette (store-bought or homemade – see recipe below)
Slice up the whole pear. Toss all the ingredients together. Add the dressing and enjoy!
Homemade Champagne Vinaigrette
Courtesy of Epicures
Makes multiple servings
- 1 garlic clove, grated (the actual recipe called for minced garlic, but I recommend using a grater so that you don’t wind up with any chunky bites of garlic)
- 2 tbs dijon Mustard
- 1/4 cup champagne vinegar
- 2 tbs fresh lemon juice
- 2 tbs honey
- 2 drops of hot sauce
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp pepper
- 1/2 cup EV olive oil
Whisk everything but the olive oil together. Then, while still whisking, slowly pour in the oil. Pour as much as you want over your salad.