The Waldorf salad was first created in 1896 by Waldorf-Astoria hotel in New York. Since that time there has been a multitude of renditions and each has added onto the orginal idea. Whether that be changing to pears, use of pecans, or the omission of celery, everyone has made it their own.
Pears instead of apples can change a Waldorf dramatically, making it sweeter and removing the tartness that can sometimes come with apples. By peeling some of the pear into slivers your pear merges into the dressing. Also, white grapes would normally be used but the black sable grapes have such a great, almost wine like flavour, that builds the layers of this salad. The traditional mayonaise dressing is a very old heavy dressing. I think my simple buttermilk dressing adds the needed acidity and refreshing lightness required for this salad.
Time: 10 minutes
Serves: 4 as a starter, 2 as a main
1 Pear (good size)
50g of walnuts
75g Black Grapes, preferably sable grapes
2 Little Gem Lettuce
50ml of buttermilk
1 tablespoon of olive oil or high quality rapeseed
1 tablespoon of cider vinegar
1. Start by chopping your lettuce in medium size pieces and add to a large mixing bowl
2. Next half the grapes and break the walnuts into small pieces. Add half of both to the mixing bowl.
3. Peel the pear. Cube half the pear and use a peeler to make small slivers of pear with the rest. Add the slivers of pear to the mixing bowl.
4. Make the dressing by combining the vinegar, buttermilk and oil.
5. Mix the ingredients in the mixing bowl well. Add the dressing and combine well.
6. Place the salad on indivual plates or on a platter.
7. Place the remaining walnuts, pear and grapes on top of the salad.