Radicchio’s brilliant red hues matched with golden-, green-, or red-skinned pears make this a festive salad for the holidays. Goat cheese and walnuts accompany the radicchio here, but a mild blue and almonds or pistachios can be used in their place.
Radicchio Salad With Pears, Walnuts, and Goat Cheese
1/2 cup (2 oz./60 g) walnuts
2 firm but ripe pears
1 Tbs. fresh lemon juice
2 heads radicchio
3 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
1 Tbs. balsamic vinegar
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
6 oz. (185 g) semi-aged goat cheese, such as Bûcheron, or fresh goat cheese, cut into 8 slices
Preheat an oven to 350°F (180°C). Spread the walnuts in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet and bake, stirring once or twice, until fragrant and lightly toasted, 10 to 12 minutes. Pour onto a small plate and let it cool, then chop coarsely.
Halve and core the pears, cut lengthwise into thin slices, and place in a bowl. Drizzle with the lemon juice, toss to coat, and set aside. Remove and discard any brown or wilted leaves from the radicchio heads, then separate the bright red leaves from the heads.
To make the dressing, in a small bowl, whisk together the olive oil, vinegar, and 1/4 tsp. salt until emulsified.
Place a few leaves of radicchio on each plate. Arrange the pear slices and cheese on top and sprinkle with the walnuts. Drizzle each salad plate evenly with the dressing season with pepper, and serve.
Find more fun recipes for couples in the kitchen—and everyone else who enjoys making great food—in our Two in the Kitchen: A Cookbook for Newlyweds, by Christie Dufault and Jordan Mackay