Bacon-Wilted Greens with Warm Pecan-Crusted Goat Cheese

///Bacon-Wilted Greens with Warm Pecan-Crusted Goat Cheese

Bacon-Wilted Greens with Warm Pecan-Crusted Goat Cheese

I chose the Bacon-Wilted Greens with Warm Pecan-Crusted Goat Cheese recipe from Virginia Willis‘s newest cookbook, “Lighten up y’all” to share, as I’m a sucker for any salad with warm goat cheese. I especially like that the nutty cheese is on a slice of apple in lieu of bread.

One salad serving is 255 calories, 16 grams fat, 4 grams fiber and 14 grams protein.

In the book, Virginia writes, chèvre chaud, which translates to “hot goat cheese,” is a traditional French dish that consists of a disk of fresh goat cheese melted on a bread crouton and served with crisp sturdy greens, often frisée. I first came across the idea of using a slice of apple instead of bread at a little ferme d’auberge, an inn that doubles as a working farm, in Burgundy, France. I can’t imagine a French bonne femme, or housewife, being out of baguette, so maybe she simply had a bit of lightened up inspiration, too.

The traditional French version has a pretty slim greens-to-cheese ratio and is also dressed in a shallot vinaigrette, so I’ve lightened it up by adding tons of kale, using slightly less cheese, and eliminating the baguette. The result is still a hearty, filling salad packed with flavor and protein and perfect for fall.”


– bonnie

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Bacon-Wilted Greens with Warm Pecan-Crusted Goat Cheese
2 center-cut bacon slices, cut into lardons
1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
1 apple, such as Gala, Granny Smith, or Honeycrisp, skin on, cored and diced
Coarse kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
8 cups tender kale, stemmed and cut into chiffonade
1 tablespoon sherry vinegar
3 tablespoons very finely chopped pecans
1 (6-ounce) log goat cheese
1 small apple, such as Gala, Granny Smith, or Honeycrisp, skin on with core, cut crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick slices

Line a plate with paper towels. Line a rimmed baking sheet with a silicone mat and set aside.

Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the bacon and cook until crisp, about 5 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon to the prepared plate. Pour off all but a film of the grease on the bottom of the pan. (Just eyeball it instead of trying to measure, but it should be just about 1⁄2 teaspoon; discard the remaining grease.)

To make the salad, return the skillet to low heat. Add the onion
and the diced apple. Season with salt and pepper. Add the kale; cook
until the kale begins to wilt, stirring occasionally, about 2 minutes. Add the vinegar; cover, and cook until just tender, stirring occasionally, about 4 minutes. Remove from the heat, taste, and adjust for seasoning with salt and pepper.

Meanwhile, preheat the oven to broil. Place the finely chopped pecans in a shallow dish and season with salt and pepper. Roll the goat cheese log in the pecans to evenly coat. Refrigerate until firm if necessary, then cut evenly into 6 rounds and place each round of cheese on the sliced apple. Place on the prepared baking sheet. Transfer to the oven and broil until the cheese is melted and browned, 3 to 5 minutes.

To serve, divide the kale salad among the plates. Top with an apple-cheese round and garnish with the reserved bacon. Serve immediately.

Makes 5 1/2 cups to serve 6

By |2017-08-25T16:03:29+00:00March 28th, 2015|Breads, Sides & Salads, Recipes|0 Comments

About the Author:

Blogger Bonnie Tandy Leblang has been covering food since before it was hip to do so! She’s penned magazine, newspaper and syndicated food columns in addition to cookbooks. Follow her on twitter @BonnieBOTB and on Instagram@BiteoftheBest and at @BonnieBOTB "I eat for a living!” is her mantra, sharing what she’s sampled so you’ll know where (or where not) to go, plus what food products and gadgets to try. For her full bio go to the about us page.

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