Asian-Spiced Pear &Arugula Salad
- 1 lemon
- 3 cups apple cider
- 3/4 cup plum wine
- 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar, aged
- 2 star anise, whole
- 1 teaspoon pink peppercorns
- 2 pieces fresh ginger, peeled
- 4 pears, ripe, preferably Bosc
- 1/2 pound arugula, stemmed
- 1/4 pound blue cheese
- Remove the zest of the lemon and cut into fine julienne.
- Juice the lemon.
- Mix the cider, plum wine, vinegar, star anise, peppercorns, ginger, half the lemon juice and half the lemon zest in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil.
- Peel, halve and core the pears, keeping the stem attached.
- Place the pear halves in the hot liquid and reduce the heat until liquid barely simmers.
- Poach until pears are tender, about 8 minutes.
- Remove the pears from the poaching liquid with a slotted spoon.
- Bring the poaching liquid to a gentle boil and cook until reduced by half, about 15 to 20 minutes.
- Stir in the remaining lemon juice.
- (The salad can be prepared to this point up to 1 day ahead. Store pears and liquid in the refrigerator, but bring to room temperature before serving.)
- Arrange arugula on serving plates.
- Place pear halves on top of greens and drizzle with the reduced liquid.
- Crumble the cheese around the rim of each plate and garnish with the remaining lemon zest.
- Serve immediately.