Spinach and Gorgonzola Salad with Blueberries
If you look at the ingredients list for this easy spinach pear salad you might be surprised just how few ingredients are required. ‘Less is more’ often applies to recipes, and salad recipes are no exception. Why add ingredients you do not really need when you can make a mouthwatering salad with just a few? Take this recipe for example. You will need baby spinach to form the foundation for your salad. Then you will need blueberries and pear for sweetness, walnut halves for crunch (these can be toasted, candied or just plain), and tangy gorgonzola cheese for a rich, creamy flavor and texture.
Combining these five ingredients gives you a little bit of everything and ensures your salad will be well-balanced. You could just toss this salad with a bottled dressing but for the best results you should really make your own, because your homemade salad deserves a homemade salad dressing. This one is made with honey, mustard, oil, and balsamic vinegar, with a touch of salt and black pepper to finish it off.
The honey highlights the sweet accents in the salad and the other ingredients add piquancy and flavor. Serve this salad as an ‘in between’ course at a dinner party, after the appetizer and before the entrée, or serve it for lunch or as an unusual appetizer before any meal.
- 1 lb baby spinach
- 1 peeled, chopped pear
- ½ cup crumbled gorgonzola cheese
- 1 pint fresh blueberries
- 4 oz walnut halves
- 1 teaspoon honey
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- ½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
- ¼ cup balsamic vinegar
- Salt and black pepper to taste
- To make the dressing, combine the vinegar with the honey and mustard until the mixture is smooth.
- Slowly whisk in the olive oil in a steady stream until combined.
- Add salt and pepper to taste.
- Rinse the spinach in a salad spinner and spin it dry, or rinse it in a sink full of cold water and shake the excess water off.
- Rinse the blueberries, removing any bruised or spoiled ones.
- Wash and cut the pear into ½ inch cubes.
- Crumble the gorgonzola, and then toss it with the spinach, pear, and half the dressing.
- Transfer this mixture to a chilled serving platter.
- Top with the walnuts and blueberries and drizzle the remaining dressing over the top.
- Toss gently until mixed.
This lovely salad is so simple. It requires so few ingredients but the end flavor is magnificent. Pear, gorgonzola, and walnuts are considered gourmet ingredients, and the blueberries and pear add a wonderful sweetness to the salad. The homemade dressing finishes it off beautifully. Serve this salad with a Chardonnay like in the photo or, if you are having it for lunch, you might want to have some buttered bread with it to make it more filling. Feel free to swap the blueberries for raspberries and the balsamic vinegar for raspberry vinegar if you want. Use baby spinach and remove the stems for the most delicate results.
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