PAN FRIED GOAT CHEESE AND STRAWBERRY SALAD WITH POPPY SEED DRESSING

Pan Fried Goat Cheese Salad with Poppy Seed Dressing
Why, hello, lovelies! It feels so good to be back in this space after spending the last few weeks traveling, seeing so many dear loved ones, and eating my way through a few states (and Mexico)! I am so filled with inspiration–and also brimming with travel photos to share–but before I dive into all that goodness, I wanted to share my new favorite salad in the world.

True, this is not as easy as dumping greens and dressing in a bowl, but the work is well worth the effort. We made this for Easter (yes, approximately 1.1 million years ago) and the whole crowd basically licked their plates clean.
It has all sorts of bright flavors going on with strawberries and pomegranate seeds–and let’s not forget those golden brown pan fried discs of goat cheese awesome. Because goat cheese is my everything.
Pan Fried Goat Cheese Salad with Poppy Seed Dressing
Particularly if it is pan fried.
Sure, sure, you could bake this to make the salad a teensy bit healthier, but what with the candied pecans and drool-inducing poppy seed dressing, you might as well go big or go home with this one.
I promise: you will not be disappointed. Not one iota.
Pan Fried Goat Cheese Salad with Poppy Seed Dressing
Oh yes, we see you, pan fried goat cheese.
Bring. It. On.
In other news, I only have 10 weeks left before we get to meet our little boy and the anticipation is killing me! Any advice on how to deal with this home stretch?
I’ll share some of our Cancun photos later this week, mostly because I’m carving ocean breezes and salty skin all over again (though I am blissfully glad that the sun has come out to play here in Michigan)!
Pan Fried Goat Cheese Salad with Poppy Seed Dressing

Pan Fried Goat Cheese and Strawberry Salad

For the Pan Fried Goat Cheese
Adapted from MyRecipes
1/3 cup flour
1 large egg
2/3 cup panko bread crumbs
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 (11 oz.) log goat cheese
2 tablespoons olive oil
Create an assembly line to dredge the goat cheese: Put flour in a small bowl. Put egg in another small bowl and whisk to scramble. Put bread crumbs, thyme, pepper and salt in a third bowl. Roll goat cheese into small (1-2 tablespoons) balls and smoosh between your palms to create flat discs. Dredge each disc in flour, dip into the egg wash, then press into the breadcrumb mixture. Continue until goat cheese is gone. Refrigerate goat cheese while you prepare the salad, candied pecans, and dressing.
After you prepare the salad and dressing, heat olive oil over medium heat in a large nonstick skillet and pan fry discs for 2 minutes on each side, until golden brown. Drain on paper towels and serve immediately on top of prepared salad.
For the Salad
1 bunch red lettuce, sliced into 1-inch pieces
2 ripe avocados, diced
1/2 cup pomegranate seeds
1 cup fresh strawberries, sliced
3/4 cup candied pecans (recipe below)
Put all salad ingredients in a large bowl. Serve with pan friend goat cheese and poppy seed dressing.
For the Candied Pecans
1 tablespoon butter
4 tablespoons light brown sugar
3/4 cups pecan pieces
Heat butter in a nonstick skillet and add pecans. Add sugar and cook over medium heat until sugar melts and caramelizes. Remove candied pecans to a plate. They will harden as they cool.
For the Poppy Seed Dressing

 

Adapted from Everyday Reading


3/4 cups white sugar
1 teaspoon dry mustard
1 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup white vinegar
1 1/2 tablespoons white onion, chopped
1 cup vegetable oil
1 1/2 tablespoons poppy seeds
Put sugar, mustard, salt, vinegar, and onion in a food processor or blender. Blend until smooth. Slowly add oil and blend continuously to combine all ingredients (dressing will turn creamy as oil emulsifies). Stir in poppy seeds.

And some of my other favorite salads, in no particular order:

Roasted Potato Salad

Roasted Potato Salad

 

Skinny Chopped Cobb Salad

Skinny Chopped Cobb Salad
Perfect Salmon Salad
Thai Chicken Satay Salad

And juuuust in case you’re looking for some Cinco de Mayo recipes to use tonight,

you can’t go wrong with these:

 

Easy Slow Cooker Shredded Beef Tacos
Blackened Shrimp Tacos
Slow Cooker Carnitas

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