Pear, Celery, Potato, and Watercress Salad

Preparation info

  • Difficulty

    Easy

  • Makes about 1 cup , enough for

    3

    salads

Appears in

Sweet, crunchy, smooth, creamy, and slightly piquant, this salad is complex in flavor but very simple to make. We prefer Gorgonzola dolce latte for its creamy texture, but you could substitute a Roquefort or blue cheese. The watercress may be augmented with Belgian endive for a tart contrast to the peppery taste of the cress. If pears are not in season, substitute blanched carrot slices, and you may replace the celery with fennel.

Ingredients

For Each Serving

  • ½ cup watercress, stems trimmed
  • ¼ cup sliced (¼ inch) boiled small potato
  • ¼ cup thinly sliced celery, cut on the diagonal
  • cup Gorgonzola Cream Vinaigrette (recipe follows)
  • 7 thin slices ripe Bartlett or Comice pear (with peel)
  • 6 walnut halves, toasted and coarsely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon crumbled Gorgonzola dolce latte (optional)

Gorgonzola Cream Vinaigrette

  • ½ cup mild olive oil
  • ¼ cup finely crumbled Gorgonzola dolce latte
  • ¼ cup heavy cream
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • Pinch freshly ground pepper

Method

Make a bed of the watercress on a salad plate. Toss the potato and celery with a little of the vinaigrette and place on the watercress. Strew the pear slices over top. Drizzle with the rest of the vinaigrette and sprinkle with the walnuts. You may add a few chunks of crumbled Gorgonzola as well.

To make Gorgonzola Cream Vinaigrette, place all the ingredients in a food processor and pulse quickly just until combined. Do not overprocess.