This salad is a meal in a bowl and has all the textures and tastes I crave in a perfect summer dish. A rich meatiness from the roasted plums and crunch from the toasted almonds and pine nuts. A tangy zing from the lemon thyme and lime zest. Indulgent creaminess from the fresh goat cheese and that little touch of “oh la la” from the Prosecco & honey citrus vinaigrette.
- 6 ripe plums
- 3 tbsps olive oil
- 2 tbsps honey
- 4 tbsps Marcona almonds
- 1 tbsp of pine nuts
- 5 sprigs of lemon thyme
- 5.5 oz mixed greens
- 1 Log of fresh goat cheese - about 4 oz
For the Prosecco & honey citrus vinaigrette:
- 6 tbsps of extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tbsps of white balsamic vinegar ( we love Acetaia di Terga)
- 1 tbsp of honey
- 2 tbsps of Prosecco
- Zest from 1/2 a lime
- Pinch of coarse sea salt
- Pinch of ground pepper
Preheat oven to 350 degrees
Drizzle olive oil and honey over a roasting pan.
Sprinkle the roasted pine nuts and Marcona almonds, leaving a few almonds to the side.
Finely chop the lemon thyme and dust over the salad.
Lightly grate the remaining almonds with a Microplane over the plums for a finishing flourish.
Drizzle the leftover vinaigrette over the salad and serve.
At the same time, place the almonds and pine nuts on a dry small roasting pan or cookie sheet.
Pop both pans in the oven and set the timer for 10 minutes but keep a close watch. The plums will be done with the honey starts to caramelize and the flesh gets a little golden and tender (but not too much - you want the pretty plums to hold their shape!). Take the pan out of the oven and remove the plums to cool.
The pine nuts and almonds should only begin to lightly brown - this elevates their nutty flavor. Pull them out of the oven before they turn too dark - likely between 8-10 minutes.
Making the vinaigrette
Mix the vinaigrette by first adding the salt and pepper in a large salad bowl and whisking it with the honey and the balsamic vinegar. Add in the olive oil, then Prosecco while whisking. Grate in the lime zest and whisk some more. Your vinaigrette should be deliciously unctuous. Now add the salad, one handful at a time, while tossing the salad and the vinaigrette together with a pair of kitchen tongs. This ensures an even distribution of the vinaigrette.
Plate the salad onto a platter, leaving a few drops of vinaigrette at the bottom of the bowl.
Arrange the plums around the platter (they should be still slightly warm but not too hot to melt the salad!)
Crumble the log of goat cheese all over.
Slice the plums in half from top to bottom and then delicately twist to open. Remove the pits gently with a pairing knife.
Set the plums flesh side down on the honey and olive oil. I like to swirl the plums around a bit on the pan to get a good coating on each plum.
Keywords: plums, salads, goat cheese, french cuisine, summer salads