The combination of cheese and pear in this whole pear and goat cheese salad is a heavenly match. I remember first trying a romaine lettuce and pear salad many years ago on a birthday dinner party in Montreal and I was amazed at how a simple combination like this can produce such wonderful flavor. Moreover, there is something about pears that makes you want to draw or photograph them, something mysteriously beautiful about them…Anyway the point is I have been tirelessly adding pears to my greens for a long time now. For this recipe I suggest you use your favorite goat cheese and smaller size, juicy pears to leave room for the main and the dessert.
4 sweet firm pears
150 g soft goat cheese of your choice, mashed with a fork
1 lemon juiced
3 Tbs of dry currants (dry cranberries will be great too)
2 Tbs of sliced almonds
2 tsp pickled green pepper corns (optional)
small bunch of fresh thyme (or mint)
Sea salt and black pepper
Assemble the pears on a cutting board before transferring them to the plates.
Wash and slice the pears horizontally in four equally thick slices.
With a small pairing knife remove the seeds from the two middle slices, you will have two holes, that is fine.
Brush both sides of the slices with lemon juice to prevent browning and sprinkle with sea salt and pepper.
Put 2 tsp of cheese on the bottom slice of pear, sprinkle with almonds, dry currants and two or three green pepper corns (those are spicy) and one spring of thyme. Top with a slice of pear and repeat.
Make it ahead: You can assemble the pears up to 30 before serving, this would in fact allow the flavors to blends.
Wine Suggestion: Serve it with Beaujolais or Chardonnay.