There’s nothing quite so satisfying as a good green salad, especially when you add ingredients like Asian pears and preserved lemons. Asian pears are one of my favorite winter fruits: they are about the size of a very small apple, but have a brown-yellow skin and a pale white flesh. They are quite tasty while still a bit firm and can be eaten skin and all. They lend a lovely crunch to a salad and pair really well with nuts. If I could figure out where I put the hazelnuts from last year, as well as find the nutcracker, I would definitely have used hazelnuts on this salad. As it was, I do know where the walnuts are, so that’s what I went with.
I’ve been waiting weeks to start eating my preserved lemons. Preserved lemons are amazingly easy to make – all it takes is salt and lemons, though you can add in various spices, like peppercorns or bay leaves. This year, I made my preserved lemons with both peppercorns and bay leaves, but also added in the few juniper berries I had left over from pickling last summer. The lemons are perfectly salty and tart and ideal for adding to vinaigrette. I’m sure I’ll be posting more recipes with preserved lemons soon. If you are looking for a recipe, check out the preserved lemon recipe I posted last year. You can use regular lemons or Meyer lemons – both are fantastic. They do take a little bit of time, as the lemons have to cure in the refrigerator for at least a month. Use only the rind – the pulp is discarded. You can also find preserved lemons in various specialty food stores, though I have to say that these are super easy and quick to make and well worth the time to make a batch of your own.
As we move into the calorie laden holidays, I definitely will be eating salads with my lunches. This green salad with Asian pears and preserved lemon vinaigrette is a bright spot this time of year. Enjoy!
- 4 cups salad greens
- 2 Asian pears, sliced and cored
- 1/4 cup walnuts
- Preserved lemon vinaigrette (below)
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped preserved lemon
- Fresh ground pepper to taste
- Combine the salad greens, Asian pears, and walnuts in a salad bowl.
- In a small jar with a lid, add the olive oil, red wine vinegar, preserved lemon and pepper. Shake to combine.
- Dress the salad with the vinaigrette and enjoy!