Saturday, November 13, 2010

Pear and Watercress Salad with Szechwan Peppercorns

The farmer’s market is now overflowing with the autumn crop of apples and pears. I picked up a few Bartlett pears earlier this week and since I like my pears soft and juicy, I stored them in a brown paper bag to ripen them more. They reached the perfect state of squidgy-ness this evening, so I saved one for breakfast tomorrow and chopped up the rest for a side salad. The recipe is a simple variation of an apple salad I had posted in April. The perfumed and slightly piney fragrance of the Szechwan peppercorns amplify the honey sweetness of the pears, all kicked-up another notch by the peppery watercress.

1 lb (½ kg) Pears, diced
Juice of ½ lemon
1½ tsp Szechwan Peppercorns
3 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
½ tsp freshly ground Black Pepper
½ lb (250 gm) Watercress, thoroughly washed and dried
½ tsp sea salt (or kosher salt)
  1. Mix pears and lemon juice in a large bowl and set aside.
  2. Using a mortar and pestle, coarsely grind Szechwan peppercorns, making sure a few peppercorns remain whole.
  3. In a small skillet, heat 1 tbsp of olive oil over medium heat, add Szechwan peppercorns and sputter for 1 minute. Pour peppercorns and oil over the pears.
  4. Add the remaining olive oil and black pepper to the pears and mix well. Let sit in the fridge for 10 mins.
  5. Add watercress to pears and toss to mix well. Garnish with a sprinkling of sea salt.

1 comment:

  1. This looks amazing! And for someone who's cooking-challenged like me, I think I may be able to pull it off. I am going to make this!



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