Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Kale Caesar Salad with Grilled Goat Cheese

Kale is everywhere. It's hearty. It's good for you. I seem to get it in my CSA every week. I do love kale, but sometimes it starts to be a little much. You need to do something different with it. Hence taking a caesar dressing and using raw kale leaves. And since I was by myself, I got to put a bunch of goat cheese on it. Though I mentioned in the tapenade recipe about using Thai fish sauce as a replacement for anchovies, I learned it first when making this. I made it for one as an entree, but it could easily work for two as a salad course.

Kale Caesar Salad with Grilled Goat Cheese:
(Caesar Dressing modified via 1,000 Mexican Recipes)

Serves 1

½ c. olive oil
2 Tb. red wine vinegar
1 Tb. lemon juice
2 Tb. Thai fish sauce
2 large cloves garlic, chopped
1 tsp. Dijon mustard
¼ c. freshly grated Parmesan cheese
½ tsp. freshly ground pepper, or to taste

2 slices hearty Italian bread (like ciabatta), cut into chunks
2 Tb. olive oil
2 tsp. dried herbs (oregano, basil)
Freshly cracked black pepper, to taste

Large handful torn kale leaves
3 oz. chevre, divided
1 egg, beaten
¼ c. panko
Olive oil

Make the croutons first. Heat oven to 375 degrees. Toss bread cubes in olive oil, herbs, and pepper. Place on a baking sheet and bake until golden brown, 10-15 minutes.

Make the dressing by placing the oil, vinegar, lemon juice, Thai fish sauce, garlic, and mustard in a food processor. Pulse until thoroughly combined. Add the Parmesan and black pepper. Blend until creamy and smooth. This make enough for a few salads, but I love caesar dressing so much I needed to make it all. It keeps well for up to 3 days, so just go for it.
Cut the chevre into 1 ounce chunks. Place chunks in egg to coat, then roll them in the panko. Heat a pan over medium heat until oil is shimmering. Add the coated goat cheese and cook until bottom side is golden brown, about 2 minutes. Turn over and cook until golden, about 1 minute more. Remove from heat.
Dress kale, toss throughly, and top with goat cheese and croutons.

Tangy, crunchy goat cheese and earthy kale are a fantastic combo, especially with the zip from the caesar dressing. I might be able to eat this every week.

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