Yield
4

We set out to make a cobb salad but got distracted by some of our favorite nibbles -- slices of pear, toasted walnuts, pickled onions. The result is a salad that's so much fun you barely notice it's a well-balanced meal. For a dramatic presentation, arrange the ingredients in strips over the lettuce, cobb-salad style, then toss the salad at the table.

How to Make It

Step 1

In a small frying pan, toast the nuts over moderately low heat, stirring frequently, until golden brown, about 5 minutes. Or toast them in a 350° oven for 5 to 10 minutes.

Step 2

Put the potato in a medium pot of salted water. Bring to a boil and simmer until tender, about 10 minutes. Drain and set aside.

Step 3

Meanwhile, in a large glass or stainless-steel bowl, combine one third of the blue cheese with the vinegar, salt, and pepper. Mix thoroughly and then gradually whisk in the oil. Reserve 2 tablespoons of the dressing. Add the romaine to the rest of the dressing and toss. Transfer to a platter or salad bowl.

Step 4

Toss the watercress with the reserved dressing. Arrange the remaining blue cheese, the watercress, walnuts, potato, onions, avocado, and pear slices on top of the lettuce.

Step 5

Wine Recommendation: There's only one grape we can think of that can handle blue cheese, walnuts, avocado, and vinegar. Riesling it is, and an off-dry kabinett from Germany's Mosel is the one you want.

Quick from Scratch Vegetable Main Dishes

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