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Mulled Wine-poached Pear Salad with Chocolate Vinaigrette

This recipe doesn't waste - we repurpose the mulled wine from the pears to form the base of the vinaigrette!  

Ingredients

For the poached pears

  • 2 cups red wine
  • 1 whole cinnamon stick
  • 2 tsp honey
  • 1/4 tsp black peppercorns
  • 1 inch knob ginger (peeled)
  • 4 bosc pears, peeled lengthwise

For the vinaigrette

  • 50 grams dark chocolate
  • 3 tbsp avocado oil (or vegetable)
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • reserved pear poaching stock

For the salad

  • 1/2 cup toasted walnuts
  • 1/2 log maple flavoured goat cheese, crumbled
  • 4 diced poached pears
  • 4-5 cups mixed salad greens

Instructions

To poach the pears

  1. Place the wine and spices into a medium saucepan and bring to a low simmer.   Add the pears, being sure to fully immerse one side of each pear in the wine.  Cover and poach for about 15 minutes, turning the pears halfway through.   Remove the pears and let cool slightly before dicing and refrigerating.

For the vinaigrette

  1. After removing the pears from the poaching liquid, strain the liquid and return to a smaller pot.   Reduce the liquid until about a 1/2 cup remains.  

  2. Break the chocolate up into small pieces and add to the liquid, whisking until it has melted and combined.  Remove from the heat and add the oil and balsamic vinegar, and continue whisking until you have a smooth emulsion.   

For the salad

  1. Assemble the salad in a large salad bowl.  Place your greens on bottom, scatter the poached pears over top, followed by the crumbled cheese and nuts.   Drizzle generously with the vinaigrette just before serving.