Pairing Pears and Pasta

September 26, 2011

Still Life with Ann's Pears

You would think that cookbooks would be edging toward extinction with the easy access to recipes on the internet.  But publishers are still inundating the market with stunning, glossy new cookbooks.  I get to see and handle many of the new cookbooks in my job at the library.  Lucky me.  But I still more often turn to the internet when I am looking for recipe ideas.

This week my friend Ann gave me a bag of pears from a tree in her yard.  I started thinking about what to make for supper and wondered if anyone had created a recipe that combined pasta and pears.  So I googled “pasta and pear recipes” and found one at MediterrAsianCooking.com that I could assemble with ingredients I had on hand, plus a little tweaking.  I used whole grain spaghetti noodles instead of penne pasta, frozen spinach, no arugula, and almonds instead of walnuts.  I added a few chopped cherry tomatoes and a sprinkling of fresh parmesan cheese.  It was really very good!

Pasta with Roasted Pears

Here is the recipe copied from MediterrAsian Cooking:

Penne with Roasted Pear, Goat Cheese and Walnuts

Serves 4-6

Ingredients:

  • 8 oz. pasta, such as penne
  • 2 Bosc pears, ripe but firm (firmer varieties of pears work best)
  • 1 tablespoon plus 3 1/2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • 1/2 cup baby arugula (rocket)
  • 1/2 cup baby spinach
  • 1/4 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1/4 cup crumbled goat cheese
  • Pinch of sea salt

Directions:

Preheat oven to 425° F. Slice the pear into thin wedges, leaving the skin on and removing the center core. Toss with one tablespoon of olive oil, coating lightly, then place in baking dish and roast in oven for 10 minutes. Remove from oven, stir again, and return to oven for an additional 5 minutes. Allow to cool, then cut into smaller bite sized pieces.

Mix together the remaining 3 1/2 tablespoons of olive oil with the balsamic vinegar and lemon juice. Cook penne according to package directions. Drain pasta and mix in the olive oil-vinegar-lemon juice mixture, then mix in the chopped pears, arugula and baby spinach. If desired, add a little sea salt to taste. Divide among plates and top with crumbled goat cheese and chopped walnut pieces.

Watercolor sketch of three pears

One Response to “Pairing Pears and Pasta”

  1. shoreacres Says:

    Oh, my. This looks wonderful. I’m going to give it a try, since I love every single ingredient!


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