A reader wrote to me a few days ago and asked about recipes with pears. I have to admit, she caught me unprepared (oh, dear, the pun of it all–unprepeared! Sorry, couldn’t help myself.) Coincidentally, though, I had recently been thinking about doing some recipes with pears; I just hadn’t gotten around to it. You know how that goes; you think about doing something, but then something else happens and then something else happens and then something else happens. Before you know it, the original thought meanders its way into that shadowy part of your brain where things are either completely forgotten or turn into a vague nagging feeling that there was something you meant to do.
When I got the pear e-mail, that nagging pear thought came roaring back to the still mostly functional part of my brain at which time I said, “Dang it! I ought to have done those pear recipes two weeks ago when I first thought about them.” Sheesh, I’m eloquent when I talk to myself.
This salad is a lovely twist on the old strawberry-spinach-salad-with-poppy-seed-dressing recipes that have been around for the last eleventy eleven years. I really enjoyed this new salad and my body thanked me for feeding it something healthy. I have been really bad lately with the caramel butter sauce and a spoon.
The recipe for the lemon poppy seed dressing is very good, one of the best that I have had. It is definitely on my keeper list.
Apple-Pear Salad with Lemon Poppy Seed Dressing
Recipe adapted from All Recipes
Lemon Poppy Seed Dressing
- 1/2 cup white sugar
- 1/2 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice (about 3 lemons)
- 2 teaspoons diced purple onion (It adds a faint pinkish color to the dressing.)
- 1 teaspoon Dijon-style mustard
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2/3 cup vegetable oil
- 1 tablespoon poppy seeds
For the Salad
- 1 bag baby spinach leaves
- 1 apple, cored and diced
- 1 pear, cored and diced
- 1 cup cashews
- 1/4 cup dried cranberries
- 4 ounces Swiss cheese, shredded or cut into small, thin strips (I had some baby Swiss cheese sandwich slices that I cut thinly)
For the Lemon Poppy Seed Dressing
- In a blender or food processor, combine sugar, lemon juice, onion, mustard, and salt. Process until well blended.
- With machine still running, add oil in a slow, steady stream until mixture is thick and smooth.
- Add poppy seeds, and process just a few seconds more to mix.
- Chill before serving.
For the Salad
- In a serving bowl, toss all salad ingredients together. Serve with poppy seed dressing on the side.