Grilled Asparagus and Spiced Pear Salad with Goat’s Cheese
It is best to get firm stalks of asparagus with purplish or deep green tips for making this asparagus salad recipe. Look at the bottom of the spears too. Dried-out bottoms mean the asparagus has been sitting around for a long time. If the spears are less than six inches long they have probably already been trimmed for you. If not, you can either snap or cut off the woody end yourself.
The asparagus should brown in spots on the grill but it should not char. Browning indicates that the natural sugars are caramelizing. Dripping oil from the asparagus might cause flare-ups so it is a good idea to keep a spray bottle of water handy so you can spray the coals if need be.
Combining these ingredients results in a wonderfully elegant asparagus salad recipe. You can omit the goat’s cheese from the recipe if you prefer not to use it but it does go well. Serve the asparagus and pears hot from the grill or let them cool for a few minutes and serve them warm. You could even let them cool fully but the flavor and aroma of this dish is far better if they are at least warm. For sweeter pears, you can sprinkle white sugar over them before grilling, or choose a sweet white wine to sprinkle over them rather than a dry one.
- 2 ripe fresh pears
- ½ cup white wine
- ½ teaspoon nutmeg
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 package mixed baby salad leaves
- 2 oz crumbled goat's cheese
- 1 lb fresh asparagus
- 4 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon salt
- Balsamic vinegar, as needed
- Preheat the grill to hot.
- Spray a grill-safe baking dish with cooking spray.
- Cut the pears in half and take out the seeds.
- Arrange them face-down in the baking dish and sprinkle the wine, nutmeg, and cinnamon on them.
- Cover and grill for 15 minutes or until done.
- Put the asparagus on a plate and drizzle the extra-virgin olive oil all over it.
- Rotate the spears until they are evenly coated then sprinkle some salt on them and rotate again.
- Grill the asparagus for 5 minutes, turning it ¼ turn every minute.
- Prepare the asparagus in time to add it to the grill for the final 5 minutes of the pear cooking time.
- Divide the salad leaves between 4 serving plates and top with the pears and asparagus.
- Crumble the goat's cheese over the top and drizzle balsamic vinegar over the salad.
You can see what an elegant-looking asparagus salad recipe this is, just by looking at the photo. The asparagus and pear, hot from grill, is used to top mixed baby salad leaves and then you can crumble goat’s cheese over the top as well as adding a splash of balsamic vinegar. The sweetness of the balsamic vinegar is great with the pears and also suits the asparagus taste. This can be a gourmet lunch or an appetizer. It could also work as a light dinner if it is time for your evening meal but you are not in the mood for something heavy.
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