This roasted pear, Parmesan, and spiced pecan salad is so refreshing, and it was the perfect dinner this weekend when I wanted something light. It's a tasty combination of sweet pears, salty cheese, peppery arugula, and spicy pecans.
I found some huge Asian pears in my local grocery store. They were a bit pricey, all decked out in their mesh jackets, but they were perfect for roasting, and just burst with juice when we sliced into them. In addition, I found some authentic Parmigiano Reggiano yesterday that I couldn't resist.
The pecans in this salad are tossed in hot maple syrup, and then dusted with cinnamon, chili powder, and sea salt. They are sticky and sweet.. and difficult to resist as they sit waiting to be tossed into the salad.
It's Secret Recipe Club reveal day!! Each month we are assigned a member's blog from which to make a recipe! This month I was assigned 84th & 3rd, a gorgeous blog written and photographed by JJ. She is a writer, recipe developer, and photographer who just happens to live in Sydney, Australia.
Her photographs are simply stunning and her food is "veg-aquarian." I had a hard time deciding what to make but finally narrowed it down to either this Smoked Salmon Breakfast Pizza, this Smokey Beer and Onion Barbecue Sauce (she still makes meat for the carnivores in her life). or these Rye Sourdough Crackers. I've bookmarked all of these. I finally settled on this Roasted Pear, Parmesan, and Spiced Pecan Salad. Delicious!
Please hop over to JJ's blog and check out all of the beautiful food and read all of her wonderful stories.
Roasted Pear, Parmesan, and Spiced Pecan Salad
Sticky Spiced Pecans
1/2 C pecan halves
1 T maple syrup (JJ uses rice syrup)
Pinch of cinnamon
Pinch of chipotle chili powder
Pinch of sea salt
Generous 1/8 C extra virgin olive oil
Generous 1/8 C balsamic vinegar
Pinch of salt
Pinch of oregano
Pinch of sugar
One bunch of arugula, washed and trimmed
Two large Asian pears, or three to four "regular" pears, quartered and cored (do not peel)
Juice from one lemon
One to two ounces of Parmesan cheese, shaved
- Prepare a sheet pan with parchment or foil and set aside. In a nonstick skillet, heat the maple syrup on low. When it is just beginning to bubble, toss in the pecans and spices and stir to coat the nuts. Pour the nuts onto the prepared sheet pan and spread out in a single layer.
- Mix the dressing ingredients.
- Prepare a sheet pan with foil. Set your oven rack about 6 inches below the broiler and turn the oven on to broil.
- Toss the pear quarters in the lemon juice and place them, skin side down, onto the foil lined baking sheet. Broil for 5 to 7 minutes, watching closely.
- Place the arugula into four bowls or plates. Divide the pecans, warm pears, and shaved cheese among the bowls. Drizzle with the dressing.
- Serve and enjoy!