You can roast just about any kind of pear, but for this recipe I prefer the smaller and harder Seckel pears. Once roasted, they'll soften and become surprisingly sweet and floral, a perfect contrast to the salty blue cheese and slightly bitter endive.
For the pears:
- 4 ripe pears, halved and cored
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 teaspoons sugar
For the vinaigrette:
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 1/4 cup pecan oil
- 3 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1 teaspoon Creole mustard
- 1 shallot, minced
- Freshly ground black pepper
For the salad:
- 5 heads Belgian endive, cored and leaves separated
- 2 handfuls mixed bitter green leaves
- 2 cups blue cheese, crumbled into chunks
- 1/2 cup pecans, toasted
For the pears, preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. In a small bowl, drizzle the pears with the olive oil, sprinkle with the sugar and salt, and toss to coat well. Transfer the pears to a baking sheet and roast for 10 minutes, until golden brown. Allow to cool.
For the vinaigrette, whisk together the olive oil, pecan oil, vinegar, honey, mustard, and shallots in a small mixing bowl. Season with salt and pepper.
To assemble the salad, combine the endive leaves and bitter greens in a large serving bowl. Add the vinaigrette and toss to coat well. Wait until just before serving to top with the pears, blue cheese, and pecans.