Pear & Cheese Salad
I was never really one for desserts, favouring simple panna cotta, cheesecake or gourmet ice cream, nor fruit, favouring tart berries or rhubarb, but sometimes that desire for something sweet needs to be satisfied and for me, it's pears.
Simply eaten as is, raw and enjoyed, that'll do for me, but pears are equally delicious in a salad, partnered with nuts and cheese, be it a cream Dolcelatte or a soft, sour goat cheese.
I went for the latter ...
Cut a pear into slices and nip out the core. Place into a frying pan with plenty of butter, adding in just a little hint of further sweetness from local honey or agave syrup.
I went with some agave syrup, which I've never had before and upon finding some on the supermarket shelves, could not resist. Produced in Mexico and 100% organic, it was a real gem to find in a UK supermarket. Apparently, it's a low GI sweetener and from what I know about the production, or rather extraction, very much like maple syrup - simply collected from the core of the plant.
It's very sweet; in fact, I read something like one and a half times sweeter than sugar, so go careful here. Literally, just a drop to infuse into the butter.
In hindsight, I may have dropped the ball here ...
There is an important note here about our primal sweeteners and I'll link to a few resources and you can make your own mind up:
... and so:
http://www.marksdailyapple.com/is-honey-a-safer-sweetener/ ... I tend to think so now.
Leave it out, if you wish, add it in if you do. It makes no odds to the dish.
Meanwhile, I dressed a plate ...
Over leaves of spinach, the now warmed pear slices were layered over, sprigs of Lamb's Lettuce dotted around, pomodorino tomatoes, quartered, pecan nuts and two types of goat cheese: Boilie from Ireland and Gevrik from Cornwall.
The buttery juice was then poured over, a grind of black pepper and we're ready to eat.