This is a really nice and light Warm Goat’s Cheese Salad which, for me, hits all the right notes. It’s got the tanginess of beetroots, the sweetness of red grapes, the crunchiness of pine nuts, the freshness of salad leaves and, of course, deliciously melting warm goat’s cheese.
These days, you can buy breadcrumbed goat’s cheese in packages which just needs to be heated. I think they are vastly over-priced and you are much better off making the goat’s cheese discs yourself (directions below).
WARM GOAT’S CHEESE SALAD WITH BEETROOT SALSA
6 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
2 Tbsp Balsamic vinegar
1 tsp honey
2 pinches salt (preferably kosher/rock salt)
1- Combine all ingredients in a jar with a lid and shake well. If you don’t have a jar with a lid, you can whisk the ingredients together in a bowl (and make sure that you save the jar next time you finish a jar of jam!).
2 – Use immediately or keep in the fridge for upto a week.
SALAD with RED GRAPES and PINE NUTS
Mixed salad leaves (I cheated with this by using a pre-packed bag of mixed salad greens: radichio, baby spinach, chard, mustard leaves, oak leaves, lollo rossa, mizuna, tatsoi and a whole bunch of others)
Red grapes (4-5 grapes per person), quartered
2 handfuls of pine nuts
1 – Wash salad leaves well and drain. Use a salad-spinner if you have one to remove as much excess water as possible. Otherwise, a good drain and maybe a pat with a kitchen towel will work just fine.
2 – Place 2 generous handfuls of salad leaves on each plate and sprinkle with the pine nuts and red grapes.
150-200g pickled beetroot, diced
2 Tbsp coriander leaves, washed and roughly chopped
2 Tbsp mint leaves, washed and roughly chopped
pinch of salt (kosher or rock salt)
1 – Combine all ingredients in a bowl, stir well and refrigerate until ready to eat (upto 48 hours).
FRIED GOAT’S CHEESE
200g soft goat’s cheese log (the type without the rind)
1 large or 2 small eggs
50g bread crumbs
pinch of salt and pepper
a light frying oil (my preference is Sunflower Oil)
1 – Mix the breadcrumbs with the salt and pepper (to taste), and put them on a plate.
2 – In a separate small bowl, beat the eggs well.
3 – Slice the goat’s cheese log into 1 inch discs. Make sure the goats cheese is cold so that it slices more neatly, and try and cut enough for every one to get the same number of goats cheese discs. I think 4 per person is just right.
4 – Heat the light frying oil in a frying pan on medium heat.
5 – Meanwhile, dip the goats cheese discs in the egg and then coat generously with breadcrumbs.
6 – When the oil is hot, add the coated goat’s cheese and cook on one side for 2-3 minutes until nicely browned and firm on one side. Turn the goats cheese over and cook the other side for 2-3 minutes until nicely browned.
7 – Place the goats cheese on the salad and serve immediately with the honey vinaigrette and beetroot salsa.