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When all types of beautiful vegetables come into season in the summer, I always make this farmers market salad. Tomatoes, green beans, baby potato, basil leaves and olives are tossed in a Dijon mustard vinaigrette, and topped with creamy goat cheese rounds coated with a cumin and sesame spice mix. This hearty and healthy salad is best served with BBQ or grilled meats.

The spiced goat cheese rounds can be made a day in advance and kept in the fridge until the salad is ready to be served. The spice mix is made from a mix of fresh thyme leaves, sesame seeds, freshly ground cumin, paprika, salt and pepper, which is combined in a small bowl.

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Chilled goat cheese are cut into 1/4 inch rounds, and placed into the bowl, pressing the cheese gently to make the spice mix adhere.

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To make the vinaigrette, red wine vinegar, minced shallot, Dijon mustard, and fresh thyme leaves are combined in a bowl, whisking to mix. Olive oil is gradually whisked into the dressing, and the vinaigrette seasoned with salt and pepper.

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The dressing can also be made 1 day in advance.

To prep the vegetables, the potatoes and green beans are steamed until just tender.

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The baby potatoes are halved and steamed for 10 minutes, removed and cooled to room temperature. The green beans will take much shorter time and should be tender after 5 minutes. The beans should be rinsed in ice water to stop it from cooking and retain its crisp color.

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Drain the beans and toss together with the potatoes and tomatoes.

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Toss in fresh basil leaves, kalamata olives, and the vinaigrette dressing. Top the salad with the goat cheese rounds and serve.

Farmer’s Market Salad with Spiced Goat Cheese Rounds

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