I had this delicious pear salad at Pomegranate Restaurant (made by great chef Chet) and I am totally obsessed with it. I described it to Marilyn and we tried to make something very similar. Have you had beech mushrooms before??? I had never had them!! In this salad they had them pickled (and I am obsessed with) along with dried cranberries, roasted butternut squash and candied macadamia nuts with horseradish vinaigrette dressing. We used our own horseradish dressing that we made for the smoked trout salad, remember it?? We added to the spring mix frisee because the horseradish dressing, even when we make it thinner and more sweet, is still a heavy dressing for the spring mix itself.
Candied walnuts (or your favorite candied nuts)
PICKLED MUSHROOM RECIPE
1 pound beech mushroom
1/2 c. rice wine vinegar
1/8 c. apple cider vinegar
1/4 c. brown sugar
1/8 c. honey
1 T. dijon mustard
1 T. whole grain mustard
1 tsp. kosher salt
1 ea. thyme sprig
1 bay leaf
Bring everything to a boil in a saucepan except the mushrooms. Pour the pickling liquid over the mushrooms and let sit overnight to pickle.
Directions for the butternut squash:
Peel and seed the butternut squash and cut into thin slices. Roast in a 400F oven for 5 minutes or until just tender. Set aside to cool.
Directions for grilling the pear:
Preheat a grill to hot. Make sure the cooking grate is clean and well oiled. Halve the pears and scoop out their cores. We cooked one half pear per person. Lightly oil the pears with canola or olive oil. Put the pears, cut-side down, on the grill. Cook, turning halfway to create grill marks and heated through, about 5 minutes.
Directions for the salad:
Combine all the greens in a salad bowl and then toss with the horseradish dressing. Plate the greens and place squash, mushrooms, candied nuts, dried cranberries and gruyere on top. Place pear alongside and serve.
Beijos e Tchau!
Ludmilla and Marilyn Chudda