salad

Fresh pears star in this fall salad.

GRETCHEN MCKAY, PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE

Apples tend to get most of the love this time of year, but fall also is prime time for a variety of pears. My favorites are Bosc and Anjou pears, both of which are firm and sweet, and when sliced on top of a simple green salad elevate it to greatness.

Blue cheese pairs especially well with fresh pears, so that’s what I always crumble on top. Usually with abandon. Figs are another given, both to celebrate the season and to add a sweet counterbalance to the peppery, spicy bite of arugula.

My fledgling fig tree didn’t bear fruit this year, so I used dried mission figs. If you’re not a walnut fan, substitute pecans or almonds.

If you like, you can add a handful of homemade croutons for extra crunch. But it’s just as nice served with crusty bread, and less work.

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