Warm Goats Cheese Salad (With Optional Bacon)
This Warm Goats Cheese Salad looks really impressive - just don't tell your guests how easy it is to make! Although this recipe uses a base of watercress, rocket and spinach and roasts sweet potatoes, carrots and parsnips, you can mix it up to use whichever salad leaves you like best and any other root vegetables according to your personal preferences. Other choices for root vegetables include beetroot, red onion and Jerusalem artichoke.
Use whichever dressing you most enjoy. For this dish we have used a balsamic glaze, but it would go equally well with a honey and lemon dressing or a french vinagrette.
This versatile dish can also be adapted to serve with bacon bits for those meat eaters who don't think they can survive a meal without meat - but challenge them to try it without the bacon - they'll soon discover that this warm goats cheese salad is simply exploding with flavours and textures without needing to add meat!
Preparation Time: 5 minutes
Cooking Time: 35 minutes
Ingredients for Warm Goats Cheese Salad:
- 2 x 65g Round Goats Cheese
- 2 Large Carrots
- 2 Small to Medium Sweet Potatoes
- 1 Medium Parsnip
- 1 Egg
- 50g (1/2 cup) Dried Breadcrumbs
- 2 Tablespoons Pecan Nuts
- Bag Spinach / Watercress /Rocket Salad
- Favourite Dressing (a Balsamic Glaze works well)
- 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
- 4 Rashers Back Bacon (optional)
- Frying Pan (x2 if you are adding the bacon bits)
- Baking Tray (non stick if possible)
- Small Bowl
- 2 Small Plates
- Chopping Board and Sharp Knife
- Vegetable Peeler
- Pre-heat the oven to 200 o C / 400 o F / Gas mark 6.
- Peel the vegetables and cut each in quarter lengthways to make long thick strips (if any of your vegetables are particularly thick, cut into 6 or 8 pieces). Place on the baking sheet and drizzle with one tablespoon of olive oil. Cover with foil and place in the oven for 30 minutes. At the half way mark (15 minutes) remove the foil,
- Meanwhile, crack the egg into the small bowl and lightly beat. Pour the breadcrumbs onto the small plate.
- Dip the whole goats cheese into the beaten egg so that it is fully covered with egg, then lift from the bowl and roll in the breadcrumbs so that all sides and edges of the cheese are coated with breadcrumbs. Place on a clean plate and repeat with the second cheese. Place these in the freezer.
- Whilst the vegetables are roasting, heat the frying pan on a high heat. Add the pecan nuts and dry fry until toasted. Remove from the heat and set aside until the end.
- Optional - If you are serving bacon with either salad, fry 2 rashers of bacon per person. Remove from the heat and cut the bacon into bite sized pieces.
- Remove the goats cheese from the freezer. Heat the remaining teaspoon of olive oil in the frying pan and add the goats cheese to the pan. Fry for approximately 1 minute on each side. The breadcrumbs will start to turn golden and the cheese will begin to melt and become a little gooey inside.
- Place the salad leaves in the bottom of 2 large pasta bowls.
- Remove the vegetables from the oven. Share between the 2 salad bowls. Place the warm goats cheese on top and sprinkle with the pecan nuts and the optional bacon. Drizzle the dressing over the entire bowl and serve immediately.