Oh, and with goat cheese and pomegranate seeds. I don’t want to overwhelm you.
I am hoping to give you pear envy though.
This is one of those awesome dishes that I made partially one day and then refined the next. The first night I roasted beets and parsnips together, and poached some pear slices in white wine with a bunch of ginger. It was pretty good, and I did add some spices to make it better, but it was still missing something and I spend a good while mulling over what it needed. The next day I had the same thing but added goat cheese (I had been thinking ricotta, actually, but goat cheese was easier to acquire) and pomegranate seeds. Super delicious and not a set of flavors I encounter as an ensemble too often.
I talked a little about poaching pears in my last post. This time I made it up—a little white wine, a little honey, and a whole bunch of ginger. The spice of the ginger pairs nicely with the sweetness of the pears, and makes it more pleasing as a main dish (although to be honest I wouldn’t mind eating it for dessert). I also sliced the pears because pears don’t soften in the same way apples do and I wanted to make a sauce out of it. Parsnips and beets each have a distinctive enough flavor to stand their own within the dish, but roasting them together allows flavors to blend (or something. Mostly it’s just way easier to only use one pan). Coriander and cardamom add delicate, floral scents to the dish.
I suggest this as a side (/salad?) to your next fancy dinner party. It’s easy, showy, distinctive, and delicious.
Roasted beets and parsnips, with pear ginger sauce and additions (amounts for 1 person) 3 beets 3 parsnips 1/4 tsp cardamom 1/4 tsp coriander 3 or so small pears A piece of ginger, about the length of your thumb from tip of the nail to knuckle 1/2 cup dry white wine A small spoonful of honey Maybe 1/4 cup ricotta or fresh goat cheese
Wash, chop, and roast beets and parsnips with a little salt and olive oil until tender but still with a slight crunch. If you’d like, toss the spices in with the veggies as they cook (I added them as an afterthought, but I think they’d be better internalized).
Peel, core, and slice the pears. Peel and slice ginger. Place in a small saucepot with wine and honey. Bring to a boil and simmer gently, covered, for 5 or so minutes, until pears are tender and most of the liquid has evaporated (uncover to evaporate more, as needed).
Place roasted veggies on a plate (or serving platter), and cover with pear sauce. Crumble/dot chunks of cheese on top, and then strew with pomegranate seeds. Sprinkle lightly with spices if you haven’t added them already, and serve.