Goats cheese pâté with roast beetroot and walnut vinaigrette

Paul Rankin's magnificent vegetable salad is a perfect balance of flavours: tangy goats' cheese and sweet, earthy beetroot set off with a piquant walnut vinaigrette
By Paul Rankin
Goats cheese pâté with roast beetroot and walnut vinaigrette
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 4 as a starter or light meal
  • Cook Time: 1 hour 5 minutes
  • Prep Time: 40 minutes plus chilling
  • Effort: medium

Ingredients

Main:

  • 450 g baby beetroot
  • large handful of mixed salad leaves, such as rocket or cos
  • 8 tbsp toasted and skinned walnut pieces, to garnish
  • walnut bread or melba toast, to serve

For the goat’s cheese pâté:

  • 500 g goats' cheese
  • 150 ml whipping cream
  • 1 powdered gelatine
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 1/2 tsp cracked black pepper
  • 2 tbsp chopped flat leaf parsley
  • 2 tbsp chopped chives
  • 2 tbsp chopped or torn basil

For the walnut vinaigrette:

  • 2 tbsp white wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard
  • black pepper
  • 3 tbsp plus 1 tsp sunflower or groundnut oil
  • 3 tbsp plus 1 tsp walnut oil

Method

1. To prepare the pâté, break up the goats' cheese, peeling off any rind if necessary. Put in a bowl and leave it to stand in a warm place.

2. Bring the whipping cream almost to the boil. Remove from the heat. Sprinkle on the gelatine and lemon juice and whisk for at least a minute until the gelatine is fully dissolved.

3. Add the cream mixture to the goats' cheese, together with the cracked pepper and chopped herbs. Mix thoroughly.

4. Place a large sheet of cling film on the work top. Place the cheese mixture on the cling film shaping it into a log. Roll up in the cling film to hold the shape and chill in the fridge for at least 4 hours.

5. Preheat the oven to 170C/gas 3.

6. Wrap the beetroots individually in kitchen foil and bake in the oven for one hour. Unwrap the foil and leave to cool.

7. To prepare the vinaigrette, put the vinegar in a small bowl. Stir in the mustard and a dash of salt and pepper. Add the oils and whisk to blend.

8. Peel the beetroot carefully and cut into 5mm thick slices. Place in a shallow dish and marinate in a little of the vinaigrette.

9. To serve, put the salad leaves in a bowl and toss with the remaining walnut vinaigrette. Arrange in the centre of a serving plate. Slice the goats' cheese pâté and place on top of the leaves. Arrange the beetroot slices around the edge. Sprinkle the walnuts around and over the salad and beetroot. Serve with walnut bread or Melba toast.

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