Blackberry Pear Salad (Tre Sorelle) with a creamy Lemon Vinaigrette is a favorite copycat recipe for a healthy, light, party style salad.
Blackberry Pear Salad is a copycat recipe for a Tre Sorelle (three sisters) salad from an italian style restaurant back home, Pizzeria Limone. I haven't officially seen an explanation for why it's called Tre Sorelle, but I'm guessing it has to do with the three different kinds of cheese in the salad. 🧀 Or maybe because it has three different kinds of fruit. Either way, it's SUH GUD.
Parmesan, pecorino, and asiago cheese are in the salad, but when I make it at home I usually just use fresh parmesan unless I happen to be making another recipe that involves asiago or pecorino. This salad also features lots of fresh greens including romaine lettuce and spinach, as well as pears, blackberries, and a lovely simple creamy lemon vinaigrette. Lots yummy flavors and textures are added to make it my FAVORITE salad probably ever. Crunchy pistachios, purple onions, fresh basil and the three different kinds of cheese complete this beautiful creation. It pairs wonderfully with my Tuscan White Bean Soup. I also love it with a slice or two of French Bread.
I made a simple creamy lemon vinaigrette similar to the one at the restaurant. I already knew that oil doesn't play well with most liquids, so I added a little bit of honey, mustard, and mayonnaise as emulsifiers to help coat and bind the oil molecules to the other liquids in the dressing so that they wouldn't separate. You can whisk the ingredients together vigorously for a few minutes, but I highly recommend blending the dressing for thirty seconds to make it creamy and smooth.
Tips for the best blackberry pear salad:
- Fresh fresh fresh ingredients! I can't single out one ingredient because even the parmesan should be fresh and not the sprinkle canned kind I sometimes like to use for pasta. Same with the lemons. Don't settle for bottled juice!
- Use good quality extra virgin olive oil.
- Make sure everything is sliced thinly. The pears, the onions, the basil, the lemons, and the grated parmesan.
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Blackberry Pear Lemon Salad
- 6 cups romaine lettuce, chopped (one head)
- 2-3 cups fresh spinach
- 1 pear, bartlett or green anjou, sliced thinly
- 6 oz blackberries
- ⅛ purple onion, sliced thinly
- ⅓ cup parmesan cheese, very coarsely grated
- 1 Tablespoon fresh basil, chopped finely
- ⅓ cup pistachios, chopped
- optional, 2 Tablespoons each of grated Asiago and Pecorino cheese.
- optional, thinly sliced lemon for garnish
- ⅓ cup fresh lemon juice (2 lemons)
- ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
- ¼ cup mayonnaise (I use light or olive oil mayo)
- 1 Tablespoon white wine vinegar (white or rice vinegar work as well)
- 1 Tablespoon honey
- ½ teaspoon yellow mustard
- zest of 2 lemons, about 2 teaspoons.
- pinch of salt and pepper.
For the salad:
- In a large serving bowl combine romaine lettuce and spinach. Gently mix in sliced pear, blackberries, purple onion, parmesan cheese, fresh basil, and optional thinly sliced lemon. Sprinkle pistachios over salad. Top with lemon vinaigrette when ready to serve.
For the lemon vinaigrette:
- In a small mixing bowl or blender combine lemon juice, olive oil, mayonnaise, vinegar, honey, yellow mustard, and salt and pepper. I highly recommend using a blender, but if mixing by hand whisk vigorously 2-3 minutes until smooth. If mixing in a blender, mix for 30 seconds to 1 minute until smooth and creamy. Transfer to a salad dressing container until ready to serve.