Thursday, December 15, 2011

Pomegranate Goat Cheese Salad

pomegranate goat cheese salad

In between facefuls of Christmas cookies, I've been trying really hard to eat a lot of fresh fruits and veggies this month.  It leaves me feeling strong and fresh and healthy.  And while this certainly isn't news, I am always amazed by the steadiness of my energy level and mood when I'm well-rested and well-fed.  This week, when I'm working all day and singing most evenings, that steady energy is vital.

behold mighty pomegranate

Pomegranates are so very strange to look at, and not that easy to eat; it's easy to see why the ancient Greeks called them "fruit of the dead."  You can eat them for their powerful antioxidants, their juicy crunch, their fabulous taste, or simply because while you're eating, you can close your eyes and pretend to be the mythical Proserpina, kidnapped and doomed to spend half of each year as Queen of the Underworld.  Now that's cool.

Proserpina (Persephone)

Pomegranate Goat Cheese Salad

This salad would be a perfect addition to a Christmas dinner, with its festive red and green.  It's also a fantastic lunch during a long day of Christmas baking.  The recipe makes enough for lunch for one, but is easily expanded to serve a crowd.

2 cups baby greens
1/2 cup pomegranate seeds
a handful of whole hazelnuts
1 ounce soft goat cheese

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons lemon juice
salt and pepper

Place the hazelnuts in a small skillet over medium heat and toast until fragrant, tossing periodically, about 3-5 minutes.  Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly.  Place greens in a salad bowl, and arrange pomegranate seeds, goat cheese on top.  Roughly chop the hazelnuts and toss them in.  Whisk together olive oil and lemon juice and drizzle over salad.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper.

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