Spring Salad of Pears, Microgreens and Sunflower Seeds in Lemon Ginger Vinaigrette

Serves 4.

Note: This simple composed salad of contrasting textures and bright flavors makes a winning first course. Add grilled chicken for a light meal. The dark sesame oil adds a rich, toasty flavor to the vinaigrette, but if you don’t have it on hand, simply increase the vegetable oil by a tablespoon. You may want to double the recipe. It keeps a week, in a covered container in the refrigerator. From Beth Dooley.

• 2 to 3 tbsp. sunflower seeds

• 3 tbsp. fresh lemon juice

• 1 tsp. finely grated lemon zest

• 1 tsp. finely grated ginger

• 1 tsp. honey

• 1 tbsp. toasted sesame seed oil

• 2 tbsp. light sesame seed, sunflower or vegetable oil

• Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

• Pinch red pepper flakes, optional

• 2 ripe pears (Anjou or Bartlett), cored, sliced thin

• 4 c. microgreens, gently rinsed and dried

Directions

Toast the sunflower seeds in a dry pan over medium heat, until seeds are fragrant.

In a small bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, lemon zest, ginger and honey. Then whisk in the oils. Season with salt, pepper and red pepper flakes.

Arrange the pear slices on separate plates or 1 large serving plate.

In a medium bowl, gently toss the microgreens with enough of the vinaigrette to lightly coat. Arrange the greens over the pears and sprinkle the sunflower seeds over all. Serve immediately.

Nutrition information per serving:

Calories 180 Fat 12 g Sodium 36 mg

Carbohydrates 19 g Saturated fat 2 g Total sugars 11 g

Protein 2 g Cholesterol 0 mg Dietary fiber 4 g

Exchanges per serving: 1 fruit, ½ carb, 2½ fat.