My mother-n-law introduced me to the Partridge in a Pear Tree ornaments from USA pears. My Christmas tree has a Twelve Days of Christmas theme so the pear ornaments fit right in. The cost for a single ornament has been $7.50 plus a store receipt for 3 1/2 pounds of pears. Last year the price went up to $10.
Buying the pears used to be exciting. It was like saving the UPC codes off the cereal box when I was a kid to buy a Gremlin doll. Ten dollars sounds so expensive though; not to mention the cost of the pears. So what do I make with three and a half pounds of pears? I will only eat hard crisp pears as a snack or in salads. I was glad to come across this recipe from Health magazine that solves my soft pear dilemma. I love the flavor of Gorgonzola with pear anyway. I was a little hesitant about the cider vinegar as it can be overwhelming but the 2 tsp seemed a fair amount.
Source: Health Jan/Feb 2009
1/4 cup coarsely chopped pecans
1 tbsp canola oil, divided
3 Bosc pears, peeled, cored and cut into 1/2 inch slices
1 tsp brown sugar
1 tbsp minced shallots
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/4 tsp ground pepper
1/2 cup apple juice
2 tsp cider vinegar
1 tsp Dijon mustard
1 (16-oz) bag spinach
2 ounces Gorgonzola cheese, about 1/2 cup
Toast the pecans in a skillet over medium heat for 3 minutes until fragrant; set aside. Add 2 teaspoons canola oil to the same skillet, and increase heat to medium-high. Add pears, and sprinkle with brown sugar; do not stir. Cook the pears 5 minutes or until lightly browned on the bottom. Stir to melt the brown sugar. Transfer the pears to a plate.
For dressing add remaining 1 teaspoon oil to pan. Add shallot, salt and pepper. Stir 30 seconds or until fragrant. Add apple juice, cider vinegar and mustard. Whisk; simmer 3-4 minutes or until slightly reduced. Add pears.
Place spinach in a large serving bowl. Pour pears and dressing on top and toss. Serve with Gorgonzola and pecans on top.