Wednesday, 26 October 2016

Pear, Celery & Arugula Salad with Spiced Apple Butter Dressing

I'm noticing that apples and pears have good flavour this year, but are definitely on the small side. The effect of all that heat and drought, no doubt. I actually used about 6 pears for this but they were amazingly tiny. I'm assuming yours are closer to a normal size, but this is a salad so really, use whatever proportions you like. 

Cardamom and ginger are unusual in a salad, but classic with pears. We really enjoyed this one. 

4 to 6 servings
30 minutes prep time not including rest time for the dressing

Pear, Celery & Arugula Salad with Spiced Apple Butter Dressing

Make the Dressing:
4 pods green cardamom
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon salt
freshly ground black pepper to taste
2 tablespoons apple butter
3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
2 tablespoons walnut OR hazelnut oil

Crush the cardamom pods sufficiently to remove the papery husks, then grind the remaining seeds. Mix them in a small bowl or jam jar with the ginger, salt, and pepper. Mix in the remaining ingredients and set aside  until the salad is made. It is not a bad idea to make the dressing an hour or two in advance to allow the flavours to develop.

Make the Salad:
4 cups loosely packed mixed lettuce OR lettuce and spinach
2 cups loosely packed arugula
2 or 3 stalks of celery
2 or 3 medium Bosc or Bartlett pears
1/3 cup dried cranberries OR raisins
1/3 cup chopped walnuts OR hazelnuts

Wash and pick over the lettuce, and cut or tear it into bite sized pieces, along with the spinach if available. Wash and pick over the arugula. Mix the greens and dry them well. Arrange them in a salad bowl.

Wash, trim, and slice the celery thinly. Scatter it over the greens. Peel, core and slice the pears, and arrange them over the salad. Sprinkle the cranberries and nuts over the salad, and drizzle the dressing over it. Toss the salad and serve.

Last year at this time I made Tomato & Celery Soup from 1908.

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