Goat's Cheese, Pear and Walnut Salad Recipe

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 Updated 03/04/2017

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This is the easiest starter ever. It's not only very fresh tasting but it's also guaranteed not to be too filling. Also you can leave preparation until the last minute which gives you time to prepare other parts of the menu. It can be served as individual salads or piled all together on a big, attractive plate and everyone can dig in.

The only possible issue with this recipe is whether or not you or your guests like goat's cheese which can be an acquired taste. Most supermarkets carry a good range of goat's cheese and there are some delicious British varieties which are well worth trying. Of course, you can substitute the goat's cheese for any other cheese that takes your fancy. I think feta would be a good substitute for a full goat's cheese as you can buy varieties of feta which contain half goat's milk and half sheep's milk. With regard to the salad, any of your favourite leaves will do and the peppery flavour of watercress goes very well with the cheese.

You may be interested to try this suggested menu:

Starter - Avocado Cream Terrine
Starter - Goats Cheese, Pear and Walnut Salad
Main Course - Fruit Stuffed Goose
Main Course - Parcels of Ricotta and Spinach
Dessert - Cranberry Cheesecake
Dessert - Christmas Chestnut Bombe


  • mixed salad leaves
  • 4oz goat's cheese or any other white cheese
  • 2 ripe pears, cored and cut into chunks
  • 2oz walnuts, chopped
  • half bunch watercress, trimmed
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
(see measure conversions for more information on quantites)


  1. When you are ready to serve the salad give your salad leaves and watercress a good wash in cold water and then drain thoroughly in a collander, salad spinner or clean cloth.
  2. Depending on how you want to serve the salad you can either start puting salad leaves on individual plates or pile them onto a serving dish.
  3. When you are happy with the look of the salad leaves, you can start crumbling the cheese over the leaves. Try and distribute the cheese evenly so everyone gets an equal share.
  4. In a bowl mix together the pears, walnuts and watercress and in a jug blend the lemon juice and oil together to make the dressing. Then pour the dressing over the pear mixture and toss to mix the dressing in well.
  5. Then it's just a case of arranging the mixture on top of the cheese and you are ready to serve. Enjoy!

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: NA

Yield: 2 - 4 portions


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