Inspired by Madame Pinguet's recommendation and selected to chime with the last of the Comices. They should be just ripe enough to yield to the point of a knife.
This calls for a Vouvray with Code 4 sweetness
First make the dressing, by whisking together a teaspoon of Dijon mustard, a grind of black pepper and a tablespoon of good, mature sherry vinegar. Now add a squeeze of lemon juice and in three tablespoons of walnut oil and one of extra-virgin olive oil, whisking together until the mixture emulsifies. Set aside.
Peel, halve, core and wedgecore 3-4 pears, depending on their size. You need at least 3 wedges per person. Place in a small bowl and toss with a couple of teaspoons of the dressing to stop them discolouring.
Slice about 175g Fourme d'Ambert thinly and arrange on individual plates. Add the pears wedges, jigsaw fashion and sprinkle with crumbled walnuts. Finish with a handful of pretty salad leaves - mâche, rocket or baby spinach - and spoon a little of the dressing on top, offering more in a jug at the table.
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Janet Wynne Evans