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Published on August 22nd, 2010 | by Gareth

Pear, watercress and beetroot salad

I made this salad to accompany steak and polenta on the BBQ. It was such a tasty salad that I had to share it with you despite not getting a picture of it.

Like a lot of my ideas the inspiration came when I was wandering around the fruit and veg market and trying a slice of pear just before I sampled some watercress.

Cooking time: 40 minutes (beetroot)

Prep time:  10 mins tops


  • 1 medium sized fresh beetroot
  • 3 big handfuls of watercress
  • 1 Comice pear
  • Handful pine nuts
  • Fresh oregano leaves
  • Caramelised balsamic vinegar
  • Virgin olive oil

Place the beetroot, whole in a pan of boiling water; simmer until soft all the way through. This will take about 40 minutes depending on the size of the beetroot. Keep the beetroot submerged, top up the water as necessary. Once cooked, set aside to cool before peeling.

Wash the watercress, removing any thick stalks. Do the same with the fresh oregano.

Peel and slice the beetroot and mix with the oregano and water cress. Note wearing your best outfit or anything white that you like is not a good idea when peeling the beetroot – trust me.

Thinly slice the pear (skin on) and add to the rest of the salad.

Toast the pine nuts under the grill or in a pan, cool and sprinkle over the salad.

For the dressing, mix half and half caramelised balsamic vinegar and olive oil in a jar and drizzle over the salad just before serving.

The iron packed pepperiness of the watercress is fantastic with the earthiness of the sweet beetroot and the pear adds a wonderful crunch to this colourful salad.

I reckon some shaved parmesan or sliced prosciutto or parma ham would be a nice addition to make it into a more substantial meal. A little finely chopped preserved lemon also makes a nice addition.

Sweet and peppery

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About the Author

Englishman in Sydney loves a whisky, pies and all things savoury. Digital Marketer by day, cook the rest of the time. Amateur writer, photographer & aspiring anthropologists.

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