Spinach, Pear and Walnut Salad with Tarragon Dressing

Spinach, Pear and Walnut Salad

Spinach, Pear and Walnut Salad with Tarragon Dressing

I’m in love with beautiful, healthful pears!  The beautiful Red Anjou pears appear in grocery stores this time of year and what better way to show them off than in a fresh, tasty salad.  Pears are especially high in fiber, but most of that fiber is in the skins.  Additionally, pears contain  antioxidant, anti-inflammatory flavonoids, and potentially anti-cancer phytonutrients like cinnamic acids.  The red varieties like Anjou and Red Bartlett are rich in anthocyanins, flavonoids helpful in preventing Type 2 diabetes.  In fact, a new analysis of the Nurses’ Health Study has shown that among all fruits and vegetables analyzed for their flavonoid content, the combination of apples/pears showed the most consistent ability to lower risk of type 2 diabetes.

Perhaps we need to adjust the old adage to “an apple AND pear a day, keeps the doctor away”.  Wow!  Let’s keep eating pears, skins and all!

Spinach, Pear and Walnut Salad with Tarragon Dressing

Total Time: 20 minutes

Yield: 4-6 servings

  • Spinach, Pear and Walnut Salad with Tarragon Dressing
  • 3/4 pound spinach, torn into bite-size pieces
  • 2 Red Anjou, Red Bartlett or Comice pears, sliced
  • 1/4 red onion, coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts, toasted
  • 4 ounces reduced-fat feta cheese, crumbled
  • Tarragon Dressing
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp cider vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp agave nectar
  • 2 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 tsp dried tarragon
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  1. Arrange spinach, pears, onion, walnuts and feta cheese onto serving platter.
  2. For the Tarragon Dressing: Add oil, vinegar, agave nectar, mustard, garlic clove, tarragon, salt and black pepper into a container of a food processor fitted with a metal blade. Cover and process until smooth.
  3. Drizzle dressing over top of salad and toss gently to coat. Serve immediately.

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