4 firm pears, peeled and cut into wedges
12 ounces fresh spinach
2 Tbsp chopped pecans or walnuts
1/2 cup thinly sliced shallot
2 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
1/3 cup chicken broth or vegetable broth
1/4 cup blue cheese crumbles
6 slices crisp bacon, crumbled
salt and pepper, to taste
Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Peel and slice pears into 8 evenly sized wedges (An apple slicer works great). Place pear wedges on a cookie sheet lined with foil. Brush olive oil over the pears and season with salt and pepper. Roast for 20 – 30 minutes, turning twice, until pears are evenly browned.
Rinse spinach and thoroughly dry it, then place in a large heat-resistant salad bowl.
In a large, dry skillet, add nuts and toast over medium heat, about 1 minute. Remove from pan and set aside; sautee shallots in olive oil over medium high heat until shallot begins to caramelize. Add balsamic vinegar and stir occasionally until the liquid in the skillet is reduced by half.
Add the broth and bring to a simmer. Cook for about 1 minute until heated through and flavors are combined.
Remove from heat and immediately pour the dressing out of the skillet over the spinach and toss quickly until spinach is slightly wilted. Top with blue cheese, toasted nuts, crumbled bacon and roasted pear wedges. Serve immediately.