We used a goat cheese from Nettle Meadow, a goat cheese maker in the Adirondacks. It was a fromage blanc infused with fresh rosemary leaf. It gave it a beautifully herbal and sweet flavor, without being overpoweringly piney. Very highly recommended!
Then we splurged on just one Meyer lemon, zested it into our baby greens, added a handful of toasted almonds and the vinaigrette below, dusted the whole thing with chive flowerets and put a big smear of fromage blanc on top of each plated salad.
It was delicious, and just a template for what you can do with your own garden greens - or fresh greens from the market. You don't need a strict recipe or template - make it different every time! Just tear up fresh greens and herbs, toss with nuts and a little cheese and you have a beautiful, delicious salad that literally tastes of spring.
Spring Salad with Baby Greens, Herbs, Meyer Lemon, Almonds and Goat Cheese
About 6 cups of washed baby greens like arugula and baby spinach, torn into bite-sized pieces
About 1/2 cup of fresh herbs - lemon thyme, lemon verbena, Thai basil, and Italian parsley - chopped
1 Meyer lemon, zested
1/4 cup chopped fresh chives or spring garlic
1/4 cup chopped fresh scallions
1/2 cup sliced toasted almonds
4 ounces good goat cheese
2-3 chive blossoms
Toss the greens, chopped herbs, lemon zest, and chives and scallions with the almonds. Add the vinaigrette. Divide the salad among four salad plates. Pull the chives apart into small flowerets and scatter evenly over each salad. Top each salad with a lump of cheese and serve.
Meyer Lemon and Honey Vinaigrette
1 Meyer lemon, juiced
1/3 cup good olive oil
1 tablespoon honey, or to taste
Salt and pepper, to taste
Shake or whisk until completely emulsified. Taste and adjust sweetening or oil. Toss with the salad greens and serve immediately.The Cheesemonger's Seasonal Spotlight: Goat Cheese • If You Grow Just One Thing This Spring... Plant Arugula • Tip: How to Use Chive Blossoms in Salads and Other Dishes • Food Science: What Is an Emulsion?