Wine-Poached Pear and Cheddar Salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette

Makes 4 Servings

  • Total Time: 60
  • Prep Time: 30
  • Cook Time: 30


Wine-Poached Pears

(Adapted from recipe by Jamie Callison, Executive Chef, Washington State University)

  • 2 cups red wine
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2 whole cloves
  • 2 Bosc pears

Balsamic Vinaigrette

(Recipe by Jamie Callison, Executive Chef, Washington State University)

  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar, preferably aged 6 years
  • 1/4 teaspoon Dijon-style mustard
  • 1 teaspoon finely minced shallots
  • 1/4 teaspoon finely chopped garlic
  • 1/4 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
  • 1/4 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 pinch fresh ground black pepper
  • Kosher salt to taste


Wine-Poached Pears

In a small saucepan, combine the red wine, brown sugar, cinnamon stick, and whole cloves, and bring to a simmer. Meanwhile, peel pears, cut each pear in half, and remove the core using a melon baller. Add to poaching liquid. Simmer on low heat for 10-15 minutes until pears are fork-tender but still firm. Cool pears in poaching liquid overnight. Note: The alcohol from the wine cooks off.

Balsamic Vinaigrette

Mix together all ingredients with a wire whisk. Slowly add oil while constantly whisking. For a thicker vinaigrette, use a hand-held blender.

Arrange greens on individual salad plates. For each serving, cut one pear half into slices, and fan pear slices on greens. Sprinkle with cheese, nuts, and dried fruit. Serve balsamic vinaigrette on the side.