Arugula, Pear, and Prosciutto Flatbread
Is eating healthier your new years resolution? Detoxing after the holidays? I’m not sure anyone actually does this but if fitness club attendance is any indication, it would seem so. I always plan on eating healthier but never actually do it. Food is just too much fun. This Arugula, Pear, and Prosciutto Flatbread with Meyer Lemon Dressing is my version of eating healthy. It’s light, simple, and of course, tasty.
Believe it or not, this appetizer or light lunch includes an old fashioned recipe from a great American chef. Armenian Flatbread from the “Beard on Bread” cookbook by James Beard, is a cracker-like crunchy vessel that delivers this delicious salad to your mouth. It’s a basic, no-frills flatbread recipe that is just as good broken into soups or stews as it is piled high with arugula, prosciutto, pears, and goat cheese.
These flatbread toppings have a fun story as well. They are inspired by a dish from an upscale restaurant I worked at five years ago. I normally prefer fresh figs for this combo but pears are juicier and more accessible this time of year.
Each element plays a different role in this dish. The flatbread adds a crunch (you can use store bought crackers or even soft pita bread – no judgement here), arugula provides a grassy spiciness, goat cheese is smooth and creamy, and the pears are sweet while the prosciutto is salty. The finishing touch is the tart acid from the meyer lemon dressing (regular lemon is fine too). It may be light and arguably healthy but this dish has all 5 of our basic tastes (sweet, salty, sour, bitter, and umami) easily covered.
So here’s to a happy and healthy (or at least somewhat) new year! And stay tuned for my deep-fried tripled chocolate covered oreos post next week…just kidding.