Wednesday, 6 November 2013

Fried goats cheese and hot vegetable salad

This is quite a simple recipe but it is very quick to make and feels very indulgent and filling.

You will need:
  • Lettuce
  • Basil – I tend to use quite a few branches from a basil plant
  • Tomatoes
  • 1 pepper, or two halves from two different coloured peppers
  • Goats cheese, I use the type which comes in large circles with a skin rather than the softer log
  • Some grated cheese
  • Mayonnaise
  • Pine nuts
  • Walnuts
  • Asparagus spears- about 4
  • Dressing- I tend to use Caesar as this is v low carb, but others would do

Then it’s pretty simple, you make the salad as you would usually do with just a few extras:
  • Place lettuce chopped cucumber and chopped tomato onto a plate, then I scatter the basil which I roughly tear into small pieces.
  • I cut the peppers into strips and drizzle with oil then place in the oven for about 25 minutes. I normally do quite a lot of peppers at a time as they keep in the fridge for days once done. If you have already got some of these in the fridge they will just need heating in the goats cheese pan right at the end for about 3 minutes until they’re hot.
  • Mix the grated cheese with the mayonnaise and put a few teaspoonfuls of it on top of the salad.
  • Heat a pan with some oil in it- I like flavoured oils like garlic or basil oil but any oil will do, add the asparagus spears to it, I usually break them in half once first so they cook a little but quicker. Let them fry for about 10 minutes turning frequently- if you can do this on a griddle pan even better! Like the peppers, the asparagus can also be roasted or fried in advance and will keep in the fridge for a few days, in which case it can also be heated in the pan with the cheese at the end.
  • Once the asparagus is nearly cooked and is feeling soft when prodded with a  sharp knife, add the goats cheese to the pan, the pan should not be too oily but should be slightly damp so it won’t stick. Keep pushing the cheese around in the pan to stop it sticking, do this with either a fork or a wooden spoon.
  • After about 4-5 mintues, turn the goats cheese over, the cheese should have browned and hardened, if it hasn’t then turn it back and let it cook until it has. Continue to cook both sides until both sides are brown and slightly hard, then remove the asparagus, peppers and cheese and place on top of the salad.
  • While you are putting the ingredients on top of the salad, place the pine nuts into the pan and toss for a few minutes until just starting to brown, then scatter over the salad.
  • Scatter some walnuts over the top of the salad.
  • Drizzle with dressing, you won’t need much as the peppers and asparagus will be quite oily and the goats cheese should be very soft no the inside and this will give the salad flavour.
  • Enjoy!
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