A sophisticated green salad with pear and avocado served on a warmed artichoke base and melted roquefort cheese with caramelised red onions. For vegetarians, replace Roquefort with Stilton or Dolcelatte.
First, make the caramelised onions: in a heavy based pan, gently simmer the sliced onions, wine and sugar, if using. After 25 minutes, the wine will have evaporated and the onions will be sticky and glossy. Keep warm and set aside until ready to plate. (This stage can be done a day in advance)
Meanwhile, cook the artichoke bases for 12-15 minutes (either fresh or frozen). Drain and set aside to cool slightly.
Preheat oven to 200°C/180°C fan/400°F/Gas 6.
Place each artichoke base on a baking dish or tray and top with a slice each of roquefort cheese, avocado and pear (or apple), then a final layer of roquefort. Top with a walnut and bake in the oven until the cheese melts - no more than 10 minutes.
Prepare each serving plate with rocket/arugula leaves, dribble with olive/walnut oil, top with toasted walnuts and spots of pesto (if using) and the pear/apple or avocado, cut into small chunks.
Top with the artichoke and baked roquefort and serve immediately.
Serve with fruity chilled white, such as a Côte de Rhone, Marsanne, Voignier or Minervois.This recipe can easily be made vegan by replacing the cheese with a vegan 'cheese' alternative from health food stores.