Sunday, November 04, 2007

Use them for appetizers or combine a couple and fill up!

We end this week with 11 recipes made - we had quite a few favorites, but if we have to choose I think our top three were the Espresso Caramels, Butterfinger Eyeballs and the Muenster, Turkey and Apple Quesadillas.

We had a light night as far as dinner goes - we made two dishes that could either be served as appetizers or side dishes, but just decided to have both at once! The first part tonight was smashing sweet and savory together for this Spinach-Apple Salad with Maple-Bacon Vinaigrette.

Bringing the sweet element into the mix is pure maple syrup that combines with red wine vinegar, Dijon mustard and olive oil to form the light dressing. Once the dressing is made, it is freshened up with chives, salt, pepper and crispy crumbles of salty bacon. A bit of tartness is tossed into the mix by slicing a bright Granny Smith apple into thin strips. Tender baby spinach fills the space for your greens, along with raw slices of red onion for a light onion-y bite. There is just enough dressing to coat the salad, however, if you prefer a generous amount on your greens, you may want to double the ingredients.

Spinach-Apple Salad with Maple-Bacon VinaigretteWe quite enjoyed that herbed goat cheese we stuffed inside those chicken breasts last week, so we wanted to try and make our own! I knew I had at least a couple ideas in my recipe piles that we could work with and ended up making a recipe for Herbed Goat Cheese and Toast.

Herbed Goat Cheese and ToastThe time to make this recipe is not much, but be aware there is some downtime included as the soft cheese needs some time to take in the herbs you add to it. The herbs and seasonings flavoring the cheese are fresh chopped basil, fresh lemon zest and juice, olive oil, oregano, salt, black pepper and a couple cloves of minced garlic. The original recipe has you combine these ingredients and roll the log of cheese into it, but I thought we would enjoy the tangy cheese and herb mixture a bit more if we just combined everything together and then re-shaped the log. If you want a more striking appearance, don't hesitate to just roll it as intended. I thought the amount of lemon may have been too much when I sneaked a little taste before we chilled the cheese, but we both agreed it married well and was a pleasant background after resting a couple hours. For the fullest flavor, try to let the cheese sit out for at least a few minutes before serving it. We ate the cheese slathered over crunchy toasted baguette slices, but haul out your favorite crackers (we especially enjoy those Kashi TLC crackers) and go to town if you don't have the bread handy!

Herbed Goat Cheese and Toast


  1. The meal looks really good. I really like goat cheese on toast. We had the All-American Chili, that you post earlier. It was a success at my house. The boys had two servings each. The next day they were still requesting the chili. Have a great day.

  2. Helene - That chili recipe is certainly a favorite of ours too!