It gives me such a thrill to watch a meat and potatoes man’s man devour a salad. And I’m not necessarily talking about my husband who loves his meat, but has always enjoyed a good salad. I’m talking about certain family members and several friends who fall into this category. There are more ways to get this type of individual to greedily gulp down his greens other than just drowning a wedge in blue cheese dressing. Let me suggest to you that this recipe for a pistachio goat cheese salad with nectarine may just satisfy the manliest of men. Or at least that is my hope. You’ll have to tell me if I succeeded.
The idea here is to provide a little bit of nuts (roasted, then smashed pistachios), a little bit of cheese (the soft goat variety) and a touch of sweetness (ripe nectarine). Combine these elements with some mixed greens, some excellent local cherry tomatoes and a light dressing of fresh herbs, oil, sherry vinegar and honey. Presto! You’ve got yourself a pistachio goat cheese salad with man appeal.
A few things I did with this salad that are worth pointing out. One, I roasted the pistachios in a little olive oil in a sauce pan for about 4 minutes. Then transferred them to a piece of foil and wrapped it up into a little pouch. Then I took the back of a large serving spoon and pounded the pouch about 20 times. You’ll have yourself some smashed pistachios. This will ensure that the roasted, slightly burnt taste gets distributed all throughout your salad and the pistachios don’t end up at the bottom of the bowl.
Another thing I would do next time around is dress the salad before putting the goat cheese on top. This will make it prettier. I dressed it on a hot day when the goat cheese was fairly warm and it ended up getting a little too creamy for my aesthetic taste. Still tasted yummy. But I like a pretty salad.
- 1 7-8 oz container of mixed greens
- ½ cup of halved cherry tomatoes
- ¼ cup pistachios, roasted then smashed
- 1-2 tsp of olive oil
- ¼ cup crumbled goat cheese
- 1 nectarine, chopped
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 1 tbsp sherry vinegar
- 2 tsp honey
- ¼ cup finely chopped basil
- 1 tbsp finely chopped chives
- Ground sea salt and pepper to taste
- Combine mixed greens and cherry tomatoes in salad bowl.
- Roast pistachios in a small amount of olive oil (enough to coat the pan) over medium high heat for about 4 minutes, stirring occasionally to avoid burning.
- Pour pistachios onto foil and fold up the pistachios into a little foil packet. Let cool for a few minutes. Then pound with the back of a large serving spoon about 20 times until pistachios are smashed. Pour smashed pistachios over the salad.
- Combine dressing ingredients together and whisk until honey and vinegar are evenly distributed with the oil. Pour over salad and toss.
- Top salad with goat cheese and serve.