Warm Nut Encrusted Goat Cheese Salad with Bacon Lardons

Total Time:
25 min
Prep:
20 min
Cook:
5 min

Yield:
4 servings
Level:
Easy

Ingredients
  • 1/3 cup fine dry bread crumbs
  • 1/3 cup toasted walnuts
  • 1 teaspoon Essence, recipe follows
  • 1 cold 6-ounce log fresh goat cheese, cut crosswise into 4 thick slices
  • 1 egg white, beaten
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons Champagne or white wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons minced shallots
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 freshly ground black pepper
  • 11/2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 6 ounces mesclun or other small salad greens, rinsed and spun dry
  • 6 ounces bacon lardons (slab bacon, thickly cut into 2-inch strips), cooked until crisp and fat is rendered
  • Fresh baby parsley sprigs, for garnish
  • Chives, for garnish
  • Toasted buttered French bread croutons, accompaniment
  • Essence (Emeril's Creole Seasoning):
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons paprika
  • 2 tablespoons salt
  • 2 tablespoons garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 tablespoon dried leaf oregano
  • 1 tablespoon dried thyme
Directions

In a food processor, pulse the bread crumbs, walnuts, and Essence until the nuts are ground, being careful not to over-grind. Place in a shallow dish.

Dip the cheese slices in the egg white, then into the bread crumb mixture, turning to coat on all sides and pressing to adhere. Place on a plate and refrigerate 30 minutes to 1 hour.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

In a bowl, combine the vinegar, shallots, garlic, salt, and pepper. Let sit for 10 minutes. Whisk in the mustard and slowly add the oil, whisking to make an emulsion.

Place the greens and bacon in a large bowl and toss with the dressing to coat. Adjust the seasoning, to taste. Divide among 4 salad plates.

On a small, lightly greased baking sheet, bake the goat cheese rounds until golden brown and softened, about 5 minutes. Remove and transfer 1 round to each salad. Garnish with the parsley sprigs and chives, and serve immediately with warm croutons.

Essence (Emeril's Creole Seasoning):

Combine all ingredients thoroughly and store in an airtight jar or container.

Yield: about 2/3 cup

Recipe from "New New Orleans Cooking", by Emeril Lagasse and Jessie Tirsch. Published by William Morrow, 1993.


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