My absolute favorite salad is a pear and gorgonzola salad with a light lemon vinaigrette dressing. I recently had lunch with friends at one of our favorite lunch spots, Postino, and after having their mixed green salad, I knew I had to try to replicate it on my own.
This pear and gorgonzola salad is super easy to make and tastes so much fancier and decadent than most salads I usually eat. Just by adding fried, crispy shallots and gorgonzola cheese, the entire salad is elevated. I also love the sweet red grapes and pear slices against the ultra tangy lemon dressing. The great thing about this pear and gorgonzola salad recipe is that you can swap in other things if you don’t like one of the ingredients I added.
I chose to buy pre-candied pecans, but if you would prefer to make your own, you could follow this simple recipe.
If you don’t like gorgonzola, you could definitely swap for another type of cheese. I would suggest parmesan or goat cheese as I think both would pair well with the other ingredients.
If you don’t like fried shallots, which impart an oniony taste, you could also swap those out for some basic croutons to add the crunch that the shallots impart.
Pear and Gorgonzola Salad Recipe
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 oz gorgonzola cheese
1 bartlett pear
Handful of red grapes
1/4 cup candied pecans
2-3 cups of spring greens
salt and pepper, to taste
To make the crispy shallots, I followed this simple recipe. Thinly slice the shallots and add them to a small saucepan, along with 1/2 cup of vegetable oil. Cook on medium for 8-10 minutes, until they are golden brown. Transfer the shallots to a paper towel to drain. Reserve the cooking oil to use in the dressing or for another use.
To prep for the salad, slice the grapes in half and slice the pear into small matchsticks. Break up the cheese into small pieces. If you want to make your own candied pecans, you can follow this recipe. I personally chose to buy them pre-made to save some time.
To make the dressing, juice one lemon and add 1/4 cup of the shallot cooking oil to a mason jar. Add salt and pepper and shake well. Taste and adjust the salt and pepper as needed. This dressing will be very lemony. If you find it too tart, you can add honey or sugar until you get your desired taste. I personally liked the tartness because there are so many other sweet elements in the salad.
Once your dressing is made, simply add the greens to a large mixing bowl, add dressing, and toss until all of the leaves are coated. Place a handful of leaves on a plate and add the pears, grapes, cheese, and pecans. Top the salad with the crispy shallots. Enjoy!