This fig watercress goat cheese salad will take you from summer to fall. It takes 15 minutes to throw together and can be served as a stand alone meal with toasted sourdough or as a starter for a heavier main.
As much as I love figs in desserts, I also love figs unequivocally in savory dishes. They tend to go into a lot of salads. Pick figs that are ripe, soft, and almost jammy. There’s something about their sweetness that offsets stronger tasting greens. Some of my favorite figs to use in salads are panache, black Mission, and St John Adriatic. One of my favorite salads on regular rotation from summer to fall is fig, watercress, and goat cheese with a simple balsamic dressing. Goat cheese pairs well with figs while the peppery taste of watercress lends a nice contrast to their sweetness. Arugula is great substitute for watercress if you can’t find watercress. Hazelnuts and pomegranate seeds add texture and everything is brought together by a sharp balsamic dressing. This fig watercress and goat cheese salad can be a stand along meal with a slice of toasted sourdough or a perfect starter for a heavier main.
If you like figs, check out these savory recipes: tomato fig peach salad, honey roasted figs with goat cheese and Serrano ham.
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Fig watercress goat cheese salad
- 1 bunch of watercress, 8-10 oz
- 1 pint of figs
- 1/4 cup pomegranate seeds
- 4 oz goat cheese
- 2 tbsps roasted hazelnuts, roughly chopped
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tbsps balsamic vinegar
- 1 tbsp honey
- Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
- Toast the hazelnuts on a rimmed baking sheet for 5 minutes, or until golden and fragrant. Place the roasted nuts on a kitchen towel and rub them against one another to remove the skin then roughly chop the nuts.
- In a small prep bowl, whisk together olive oil, balsamic vinegar, honey and season with salt and pepper. Set the salad dressing aside.
- To prep the watercress, discard any woody stalks. Wash and rinse them. Divide the watercress between four plates.
- Quarter the figs and scatter them over the watercress.
- Crumble the goat cheese and scatter the cheese, pomegranate seeds, and chopped hazelnuts over the watercress.
- When ready to serve drizzle the balsamic dressing over the salad and serve immediately.