Do yourself a favor and make this salad. Every time I eat at Ventana Grill, a local restaurant in Pismo Beach, CA, I get their wedge salad and then continuously crave it for days afterwards. Well, Giada came to my rescue once again (it seems I might be obsessed with her.) I never really understood the appeal of a wedge salad. Honestly, it seemed to be so much work. I mean you have to cut up the lettuce yourself while you’re eating it! Wow, I’m lazy. And even though this salad would also be delicious as a chopped salad, try it as a wedge salad first. It’s so easy to assemble, easier than you think, and when you serve it up on individual plates to your loved ones they are sure to be impressed by its beauty.
Of course, like with most of the recipes I try out, I improvised a little and used what I had on hand rather than go out and buy a ton of ingredients. Again, lazy. So, instead of white balsamic and lemon in the dressing, I used only apple cider vinegar. And instead of pear nectar, I just threw in a little more pear. Instead of hazelnuts, I used walnuts (pecans would also be lovely, like in Ventana’s salad.) And I nixed the dried cranberries. So below, you’ll find the exact recipe I made.
Butter Lettuce Wedge Salad with Gorgonzola Pear Dressing (serves 4)
Dressing: mix the following ingredients in a blender or Magic Bullet (my personal favorite) until creamy
- 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 6 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 1/4 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 1/2 of a pear, peeled, cored and diced
- 1/2 cup coarsely crumbled gorgonzola cheese
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt, plus extra for seasoning
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 head butter lettuce, cut into 4 wedges
- 1 avocado, halved, pitted, peeled and thinly sliced
- 1 large pear, quartered lengthwise, cored and diced
- 1/2 cup toasted and chopped walnuts
- 1/2 cup crumbled gorgonzola cheese
To assemble salad: Place lettuce wedges on 4 individual plates. Top each with a some diced pear and sliced avocado. Drizzle with a generous amount of dressing and finish with a sprinkling of walnuts and the crumbled gorgonzola cheese. Serve immediately and devour.