Warm goat cheese is a luxurious and nutritious addition to a salad featuring roasted pears, cranberries and walnuts.mct photo
Goat cheese used to be a gourmet specialty item, but its popularity with high-end restaurant chefs over the past decade has quickly turned it into a supermarket staple.
The Star’s Roasted Pear With Toasted Goat Cheese Salad takes its cues from popular restaurant salads that combine the tangy flavor of warm goat cheese rolled in panko with delicate salad greens. Goat cheese has a rich taste but is usually lower in butterfat and contains more vitamins and minerals than cow’s milk cheeses. Like produce, fresh goat cheese has a season and is at its best from April to November.
Other fall flavors include pears roasted in apple cider. Leaving the skin on the pears adds fiber. A sprinkling of tangy cranberries adds antioxidants, and walnut pieces — with their rich tannic flavor and abundance of heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acid, finish the dish.
Shopping tip: Look for panko, a Japanese-style bread crumb, with the stuffing mixes.
Cooking tip: To toast walnuts, spread them in a single layer in a baking pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 5 to 7 minutes or until toasted.
Storage tip: Goat cheese, typically called chevre, can be stored for up to two weeks in the refrigerator. The cheese is spoiled when it tastes sour.
Makes 4 servings
2 pears, unpeeled
3/4 cup apple juice or apple cider
3 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper, to taste
1 (5-ounce) package spring mix salad greens
1 tablespoon toasted chopped walnuts
2 tablespoons dried cranberries
3 to 4 ounces goat cheese (log form)
1 egg white
1 tablespoon water
1/3 cup panko crumbs
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Cut pears in half and remove the core and seeds from each pear. Cut each half in half again and place in a baking dish. Combine apple juice and brown sugar. Stir until brown sugar has dissolved; pour over pears. Bake the pears 20 to 30 minutes, or until tender, basting occasionally with the apple-juice mixture. Use a slotted spoon and remove pears to a plate to cool slightly. Reserve 1/4 cup apple-juice mixture.
Place reserved 1/4cup apple-juice mixture and white wine vinegar in small bowl. Whisk in olive oil until blended. Season with salt and pepper.
Place spring greens in salad bowl and toss with dressing. Divide among four plates. Sprinkle evenly with walnuts and cranberries.
Slice goat cheese into 4 slices. Whisk together egg white and water. Dip goat cheese into egg white mixture and coat both sides evenly with panko crumbs. Spray a small nonstick skillet with nonstick spray coating, then heat over medium high heat. Toast goat cheese rounds about 30 seconds per side. Serve warm on the side of the salad. Cut pears into slices and arrange on salads.
Per serving: 165 calories (39 percent from fat), 7 grams total fat (3 grams saturated), 11 milligrams cholesterol, 21 grams carbohydrates, 5 grams protein, 99 milligrams sodium, 2 grams dietary fiber.
Recipe developed for The Star by professional home economists Kathryn Moore and Roxanne Wyss.