Fresh strawberries, baby kale, pecans and warm, creamy goat cheese star in this spring salad. It’s dressed with an easy honey balsamic vinaigrette and perfect for brunch!
This month’s #RecipeRedux is all about spring cleaning. The idea was to look through the fridge and pantry and use an ingredient that’s been hanging out for a while. Now, I’ll admit… I could have come up with a whole lot of recipes with the stuff in my pantry. Why DO I have so many different grains, cheeses, and flours? I digress. That’s a conversation for another day.
I’ve been buying strawberries like they are going out of style. They are so sweet and delicious right now. I have them for breakfast, as a snack or for dessert at least once a day. With so many strawberries hanging out, it was only natural to create a recipe featuring strawberries.
Pushing aside a basket of berries in the fridge, I found a small log of goat cheese. I’ve always enjoyed fried goat cheese on salads. So I was excited to make these fried goat cheese croutons at home for the first time. I love the crispy coating with the warm and gooey center.
Truth be told, I really just wanted to eat the goat cheese with strawberries. I’m kidding… kinda.
As for the greens… baby kale makes a perfect base for this salad. I needed to use the kale because it was about to go to the dark side. This was my second time buying baby kale and possibly my last (for a while). Turns out I prefer regular old kale. No matter. Like a good dietitian, I’m eating my greens. And I love them.
So I cleaned out the kale and goat cheese to create this Strawberry Kale Salad with Goat Cheese Croutons (!) and a drizzle of honey balsamic vinaigrette. Let’s get to the recipe…
Strawberry Kale Salad with Goat Cheese Croutons
- 4 cups baby kale
- 1 cup fresh sliced strawberries
- ¼ cup pecans
Honey Balsamic Vinaigrette
- ¼ cup balsamic vinegar
- ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon honey
- Salt and pepper to taste
Goat Cheese Croutons
- 1 egg or egg whites equivalent
- ½ cup panko breadcrumbs
- ½ teaspoon dried basil
- 2 ounces goat cheese
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- Portion the kale, strawberries, and pecans over two salad plates.
- Shake together the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, honey, salt and pepper in a jar. Set aside. (You will have leftovers for more salad tomorrow!)
- Beat the egg in a bowl. In a separate plate, mix the panko, basil, salt, and pepper.
- Slice the goat cheese into 4 equal medallions. Dip each one in the egg, then the panko mixture.
- In a small skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the breaded goat cheese one by one. Fry until golden brown (about 1-2 minutes per side). Turn once.
- Add two goat cheese medallions to each salad. Drizzle 1-2 tablespoons of the honey balsamic vinaigrette over the salads. Serve.
I used a piece of dental floss to easily slice the cheese. If the cheese begins to soften, refrigerate the breaded medallions for 15 minutes before frying. Also, you will have leftover dressing.