Arugula & Bacon Salad with Blue Cheese & Toasted Macadamia Stuffed Pears
Recipe courtesy of Nadine Mesch, Bronze Tier Prize Winner in the 2014 Salemville® “How Do You Blue” recipe contest
Yield: 4 servings
tbsp. butter, melted
teaspoons honey, divided
firm ripe pears, halved lengthwise, cored
c. plus 2 Tbsp. chopped macadamia nuts, toasted, divided
c. golden raisins
c. blue cheese, crumbled
tsp. fresh thyme, minced
tablespoons balsamic vinegar
tsp. Dijon mustard
tsp. black pepper
tablespoons olive oil
Preheat oven to 375° F.
Cook bacon in a large skillet over medium-high heat until crisp. Place on paper towel to absorb excess grease; crumble and set aside.
In a small bowl, mix the butter and 1 teaspoon honey. Brush the mixture over the cut sides of the pears, sprinkle with salt. Place the pears cut sides up on a parchment lined baking sheet and bake until just tender, approximately 15 minutes.
While pears are baking, mix 1/4 cup toasted macadamia nuts, raisins, blue cheese, thyme and 1 teaspoon honey in a small bowl; set aside.
Remove the pears from the oven; spoon the stuffing evenly on top of the pears. Bake on the upper oven rack until the cheese starts to soften, approximately 3 minutes. Turn on the broiler and broil for 1 to 2 minutes, until bubbly. Remove from oven; set aside to cool slightly.
In a small bowl, whisk the balsamic vinegar, Dijon mustard, salt and pepper. Gradually whisk in the oil until incorporated.
Place the arugula in a medium size bowl, drizzle with the vinaigrette and toss to combine.
To serve, place the arugula on 4 plates; top with a stuffed pear half and sprinkle with bacon and remaining toasted macadamia nuts.
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