Roasted Shiitake and Asian Pear Salad with Miso Sesame Vinaigrette
Roasted shiitake mushrooms and thinly sliced Asian pears are tossed with sturdy salad greens and a homemade miso sesame vinaigrette.
This is the second salad recipe (in a row, I might add) that has contained fruit! Who am I? Seriously though, this is new territory for me. In the past, I’ve always declared, with gusto, that I hate fruit in salad.
Hate! In other words, I’m a stubborn 5-year-old at heart.
But within the last few years, I’ve become a closeted fruit-in-my-salad person. Does that make any sense? I’m definitely more of a savory than sweet gal, despite the plethora of dessert recipes on the blog, but I am more and more drawn to the idea.
I think it was a bad experience with a horrible raspberry vinaigrette that scarred me for life. The idea of combining fruit with anything savory was not appealing to me at all.
Either that or it was my grandmother’s Mexican Chicken, which she likes to top with sliced (wayyyyy too ripe) bananas. She calls it Mexican Chicken, but there is no way that dish is Mexican. She’s very old-school British and pronounces quesadillas, “case-a-dill-ahs.” Enough said.
And don’t worry, she has sworn off the internet for life, so there is no chance she will be reading this. Or, at least, I hope not.
I should probably stop talking now and just tell you about this salad…
So, obviously fruit is involved! I already told you that part.
But my favorite, favorite thing about this salad is the miso-sesame vinaigrette. I only started experimenting with miso paste a few years ago, but I just love it. It is salty, slightly sweet, yet distinctive, and definitely has that whole umami thing going on.
There are many different types of miso, but this salad uses the white miso paste. Miso paste is fermented grain (usually rice) that is mixed with cooked soybeans. Basically, the darker in color the miso, the stronger the flavor. White miso is perfect for more delicate dishes like salads and vinaigrettes because it adds a lot of flavor, but isn’t so strong that it completely overpowers the dish.
I combined the white miso paste with toasted sesame oil (I could put that stuff on everything!), rice vinegar, and some freshly grated ginger to make the vinaigrette. Heaven. I kept dipping my finger into the bowl.
It is definitely good enough on its own to have as an everyday vinaigrette, even with basic greens, but even better if you pair it with warm, roasted shiitake mushrooms, toasted sesame seeds, and some crisp, crunchy, and slightly sweet Asian pear slices.
Without sounding like a Trader Joe’s advertisement, I also highly recommend trying this salad with their ‘Power of the Greens’ mix, which is made up of slightly sturdier baby greens like kale and chard!
Roasted Shiitake and Asian Pear Salad with Miso-Sesame Vinaigrette
- 8 ounces shiitake mushrooms stems trimmed and tops quartered
- 2 tablespoons (30 mL) toasted sesame oil
- kosher salt
- freshly ground black pepper
- 1 tablespoon white miso paste
- 2 tablespoons (30 mL) rice vinegar
- 2 tablespoons (30 mL) toasted sesame oil
- 1 tablespoon (15 mL) grapeseed or neutral oil
- ¾ teaspoon finely grated peeled ginger root
- freshly ground black pepper
- 5-6 ounces sturdy spring greens mix
- 1½ tablespoons toasted sesame seeds
- ½ Asian pear cored and thinly sliced with a mandolin
- Roasted the Shiitake Mushrooms: Preheat the oven to 425°F (220°C) with a rack in the center position. Place the stemmed and quartered shiitake mushrooms on a half sheet pan and toss with two tablespoons of sesame oil and a sprinkling of kosher salt and black pepper. Roast for 12 to 15 minutes, flipping halfway, until they are lightly caramelized. Set aside to cool while you prepare the remaining ingredients.
- Prepare the Vinaigrette: Combine the vinaigrette ingredients in a small jar. Shake together until mostly emulsified.
- Assemble: Add the salad greens to the bowl, along with the still warm roasted shiitake mushrooms and toasted sesame seeds. Add vinaigrette dressing (you will most likely use all of it, be start sparingly) and toss. Season to taste, adding a pinch of salt if needed. Serve and top each salad with thin slices of Asian pear.
Tips for Success:
- How to Toast Sesame Seeds: Heat a small skillet over medium-low heat, add the sesame seeds and cook, stirring them frequently, until lightly brown and fragrant. Remove from the heat immediately and place into a separate bowl to cool before using.
- White miso paste can be found in most supermarkets, Whole Foods, and other grocery stores in the refrigerated section. The vinaigrette can be prepared several days in advance and stored in a covered container in the fridge. Shake well before using.
26 Comments on “Roasted Shiitake and Asian Pear Salad with Miso Sesame Vinaigrette”
I LOOOVVEEE fruit in my salads, but I think I must have had that raspberry vinaigrette at some point also because just reading about it gave me the chills. No bueno.
YES bueno to this salad dressing though. I want to drink it.
Hahaha! Seriously, why are those raspberry vinaigrettes SO awful?! Yuck!
bummer, your photography is exquisiter! as i’m sure are your dishes.
That is so sweet! Thank you Scarlett! 🙂
Fruit in salad is AMAZING, and this one looks like the very next salad I need to put on my list to try. Holy smokes, woman!!
Thanks so much Mandy! Let me know if you try it!
Hi Laura! I love your blog, specially your creativity and the photos 🙂 I want to try this pear salad. I like to mix fruit and salad too. My favourites parters are rocket and orange.
Thank you so, so much Sarah! That means a lot! Orange is actually one of my favorite fruits in salad (it was probably the first fruit I got onboard with, haha!).
Can you believe I have never used miso before? I really must get on this! Your salad looks absolutely fabulous, my dear! I love shiitake mushrooms and having them all nestled in a fresh green salad with pears and miso dressing sounds absolutely marvelous!
I for some reason ordered a salmon salad with banana on it in France. WHY??? You’ve got the fruit right here my dear.
I’m totally into the fruit in this salad. And the sesame miso dressing (which I also could put on top of basically everything!). Pinning this to try when I get back from my trip!
Looks delicious! I may be going to “the fruit side” as well when it comes to salads! Keep convincing me!!!! I have used TJ’s “Power to the greens” mix several times, both cooking it ands using it in a salad. I like it a lot! Interested in tasting the dressing, and glad there is no sugar in that. Are the sesame seeds toasted? i bought some that are raw, and don’t know if I should toast them!
YES! The sesame seeds are toasted, I include that in the recipe. Definitely toast them! They get a lot more flavorful!
This is a beautiful salad and I can’t wait to try it out.
Thanks so much Meagan!
Such beautiful photos! Raspberry vinaigrette, yeah, I’ve had a bad experience with that before, too. I actually stay away from fruity vinaigrette for the most part these days. In general though, fruit is salad is amazing.
Thanks Amanda! Yeah, not a fan of the raspberry vinaigrette, I think I’ve just realized that it is sugary vinaigrettes that totally turn me off, but fruit is OK! 🙂
Such an amazing salad! I’m totally a fruit in salad person….although I prefer apple, pears & citrus over summer berries.
Totally agree with you on that one! Berries still are a bit weird to me, but I’m slowly branching out! 🙂
Laura, I’m so glad you joined (however reluctantly) the fruit-in-salads camp because this baby is making all my dreams come true! And so much yes to that miso sesame vinaigrette!
Haha! Me too!
Bananas and spiced chicken? That would scar me, too! The vinaigrette looks delicious. My sister’s favorite thing is making her own dressings, and this one looks like one for the books! Passing along now 🙂
IT IS SCARY! Right? Glad I’m not the only one who thinks that (the rest of my family agrees though). Thanks so much!
This looks great Laura, I want to try the vinaigrette.
Yay to fruit in salads!! This looks so scrumptious!
Thanks Katrina! 🙂