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Arugula and Goat Cheese
by Charlie Burke
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Certain flavor combinations such as tomatoes and basil, strawberries and rhubarb, and tarragon and
lobster go so well that their sum is greater than the parts. Arugula and goat cheese is such a blend, and
you can add toasted walnuts to this mix.

One day at the Sanbornton Farmers’ Market we had a run on our arugula and soon sold out. Valerie
Davies of Heart Song Farm in Gilmanton, New Hampshire
, had been sampling some of her fabulous
goat cheese, serving it on pizza with arugula. Folks were buying her cheese and running to us to get
arugula!

We have already picked our first crop of arugula and several other plantings are on the way. Spring goat
milk production is now at its peak, so now is a good time to suggest a couple recipes combining these
assertive flavors. One is an easy appetizer, and the other a salad one could find in a Paris bistro. Buy
fresh, locally produced goat cheese; you will get great cheese while supporting your local farmers.

Goat Cheese toasts with Arugula and Chives*:

20 thin slices French baguette
¾ cup chopped chives
¾ pound goat cheese
1 ½ tablespoon olive oil
2 cups whole arugula leaves
Freshly ground pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Arrange bread slices on a baking sheet and toast until golden. Let toast cool
for several minutes. Mix olive oil into goat cheese, sprinkle each toast with chives and spread each with
one heaping teaspoon of the cheese mixture. Top toasts with remaining chives and a grind of pepper
and return to oven for 2-3 minutes or until cheese begins to melt. Place toasts on a platter, top each with
3 arugula leaves and serve immediately.

Arugula Salad with Goat Cheese and Walnuts:

8 cups young arugula (for 4 servings)
1 cup walnuts, coarsely chopped
6 ounces fresh goat cheese in ¼ - ½ inch pieces
Kosher or sea salt
Coarsely ground black pepper
1 shallot, finely chopped
1 ½ teaspoons Dijon mustard
2-3 tablespoons lemon juice or white wine vinegar
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil

Prepare dressing. Place chopped shallot in a small bowl, add mustard and lemon juice or vinegar. Add
a generous pinch of salt and a few grinds of pepper. Mix and then add olive oil, whisking until
emulsified. Taste to adjust salt and pepper; you may want to add a small amount of oil or acid to
balance the dressing.

Heat a dry frying pan over medium heat and toast walnuts a few minutes until beginning to brown.
Place arugula into a salad bowl, add dressing and toss. Check seasoning again, adding more salt,
pepper, oil or vinegar as needed. Add walnuts and goat cheese, toss gently and serve.

*From
Sharing Our Bounty published by the Sanbornton Farmers’ Market

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