This pear salad combines wonderful autumn (fall) flavours in a decadently fragrant sage vinaigrette perfect for cool weather entertaining.
This pear salad with silverbeet is marvellous with the Manchego and the sweet crunch of the Corello pears all perfumed beautifully by the Sage Vinaigrette.
A perfect salad to serve with a nice creamy pasta or meats such as chicken, pork or even beef. Try it with:
Are spinach and silverbeet (chard) the same thing?
English spinach is known as true spinach with smaller softer leaves that are flatter with green veins. While silverbeet commonly known as chard in the States has deeper green, ridged leaves with white or coloured stems and veins.
When it comes to nutrition spinach contains more calcium and beta-carotene, around a third more iron, and folate.
How to make Pear salad
with the vinaigrette
In order for the flavours to develop start with the vinaigrette.
Add all the vinaigrette ingredients to a bullet blender or mini food processor, season with sea salt and cracked black pepper and pulse until combined.
Taste and adjust seasonings according to your taste.
2Prepare the silverbeet and pears
Wash the silverbeet, remove the thick white stems (you can save to use in stock) and any damaged leaves, then thinly shred (chiffonade style).
Wash the pear, remove the core and slice into thin wedges, keep your sliced pear in a saltwater bath until you are ready to assemble your salad (this will prevent it from browning – 1 teaspoon of salt to 1 cup of water).
3Assemble your pear salad
Place your silverbeet in a large mixing bowl, drain your pears and pat them dry and add to your bowl along with half the macadamias and half the shaved Manchego.
Pour the vinaigrette over the salad, season with salt and pepper, taste and adjust seasonings according to your taste.
Arrange in a salad bowl scatter the remaining macadamias and Manchego on top to garnish and serve.
Substitutions for pear salad
A versatile recipe that allows for many substitutions
- Greens – we used iron-rich silverbeet for its earthy taste and because it holds up well.
- Pears – we used sweet corella pears for their red colour but red Anjou or even Bartlet pears would work. Or swap out the pears completely for sweet crunchy apples such as red delicious.
- Macadamias – we used creamy macadamias but you could also try butter macadamias or walnuts.
- Cheese – we used Manchego a Spanish semi-hard cheese that has a piquant, nutty flavour. You can replace with crumbled blue cheese, gorgonzola, crumbled feta or goats cheese instead.
Can I make it ahead and meal prep
- You can make the dressing the day before and keep in a covered container in your fridge.
- You can shave the parmesan and crush the macadamias.
- You can wash, trim and shred the silverbeet and keep it in a container covered with water in your fridge the day before. Just make sure that you strain it well before adding to your salad.
- If you soak your pear slices in salted water (1 teaspoon of salt for 1 cup of water) it will prevent them from browning.
- This pear salad can be good to meal prep for weekday lunches, if you soak your pears in a saltwater bath, separate in your containers and just keep the vinaigrette in a separate container to add just before eating.
- The nuts and cheese make this a substantial enough salad to keep you satisfied throughout the day but you can also add some cooked pasta and a protein such as grilled chicken or pork fillets if you like.
Try some of our spinach salads…
- Bullet or High Speed Blender or Small Food Processor
For the salad…
- 1 bunch Silverbeet or Chard (approximately 400 grams)
- 2 pears (I used corella pear) (approximately 350 grams)
- ½ cup macadamias (roasted and chopped)
- 2 tbsps Manchego (shaved) (approximately 30 grams)
- Sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper
For the sage vinaigrette…
- ½ cup olive oil
- ¼ cup lemon juice (freshly squeezed)
- 1 garlic clove (minced)
- 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
- 1 tbsp honey
- 4 tbsps fresh sage (chopped)
- Add all the vinaigrette ingredients to a bullet blender or mini food processor and pulse until combined.
- Wash the silver beet, remove the thick white stems (you can save to use in a stock) and any damaged leaves, then chiffonade* and transfer to a bowl.
- Wash the pear, remove the core and slice into thin wedges, add to your bowl with half the macadamias. Shave the Manchego cheese and add half to the bowl.
- Pour the vinaigrette over the salad, season with salt and pepper, taste and adjust seasonings according to your taste.