Port Poached Pear Salad with Goat Cheese

Makes: 4 servings

Prep Time: 15 minutes plus cooling and chilling time

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Make Ahead: Pears can be poached 1 day ahead. Store pears in poaching liquid and refrigerate.


Poached Pears:

3 cups dry red wine

3 cups port

1/2 cup fine sherry

1/4 to 1/2 cup sugar, to taste

2 whole cloves

1/8 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

2 Bosc pears, peeled with stems attached


1 shallot, finely chopped

2 tablespoons tarragon white wine vinegar or white wine vinegar

1/4 cup olive oil

Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

3 cups wild arugula

1 cup frisée lettuce

1/4 cup fresh Italian parsley leaves

2 ounces fresh Spanish goat cheese, cut into small bite-size wedges

2 tablespoons (about) roasted marcona almonds

To poach pears:

  1. Place red wine, port, sherry, sugar, nutmeg, and cloves in a medium saucepan. Stir over medium heat to dissolve sugar.
  2. Remove core from base of pears using a melon baller while keeping pears intact. Add pears to wine mixture, bring to a simmer, and cook gently for 20 minutes, or until tender. Cut pears in half and return to poaching liquid. Cool pears in liquid completely. Cover and refrigerate until cold.
  3. Remove pears from liquid, transfer to a plate and let cool.
  4. Place 1/4 cup of poaching liquid in small saucepan. Boil until reduced to form a syrup. Set aside to cool completely.

To make salad:

  1. In small bowl, combine shallots and vinegar. Slowly add oil while whisking constantly to blend. Season vinaigrette with salt and pepper.
  2. Cut poached pear halves into thin wedges.
  3. Toss arugula, frisee, and parsley in large bowl with enough dressing to coat lightly. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  4. Arrange salad on a platter with pears and cheese. Coarsely grate almonds over salad. Drizzle syrup over salad and serve.
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