Pear, Blue Cheese, Dandelion and Watercress Salad

On any Hungry Cyclist cycling holiday excellent food is guaranteed. Whether you are dinning in Michelin starred restaurants, tasting cheese and truffles at a local market or eating amongst the locals in a popular café, I make sure my guests get to enjoy the very best cuisine Burgundy has to offer.

Whether you are kicking-back in a shady glade amongst the vines of Burgundy; eating in the orchard of The Hungry Cyclist Lodge or chilling out in a park in Beaune I like to  ‘pique-nique’ in style and with an extensive knowledge of regional cuisine, and as a keen cook I try and source the very best ingredients from local markets and artisan producers to make sure my clients get a truly authentic taste of the region they are in. Local cheeses, fresh charcuterie, fresh breads, healthy salads are all paired with the best Burgundy wines . After all what could be better than working up a healthy appetite on a bicycle, before taking time out to enjoy the best local produce in a natural and peaceful environment? 

We have had a glut of pears this year in the orchards at The Hungry Cyclist Lodge, and more walnuts than I know what to do with. The lawn is also abundant with dandelions and while I have given up trying to get rid of them, I might as well enjoy them.  I use a creamy Blue to Gex from the hills of the Jura for the cheese in this salad, but any blue will do.  

  •  juice of one lemon
  • a healthy glug of extra-virgin olive oil
  •  a pinch of salt
  • 1 tbs of wild honey
  • Large Bunch of Young Dandelion Leaves
  • 1 table spoon walnut vinegar
  • ground black pepper
  •  2 ripe Comice pears – be careful not to bruise
  • 1 bag of watercress, rinsed & washed
  • 100 g of Blue de Gex
  • a large handful of walnuts, loosely broken

1 . In a bowl whisk the lemon juice and the olive oil with a fork until emulsified. Add the honey, salt, and pepper and stir a little more.
2 . Peel, halve, and core the pear and slice into thin wedges.
3 . Lay the watercress into your serving bowl. Add the sliced pears and then pour over the dressing. Mix through.
4 . Crumble the blue cheese over the salad along with the walnuts and serve.