Salad with Baked Goat Cheese Tarragon Patties

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A delicious salad topped with tangy, creamy and crispy warm goat cheese tarragon patties and pomegranate seeds.
It takes a lot for me to eat a salad. There has to be something mighty good mixed into all the raw greens or else I’m just not interested. This salad here is one of the few that manages to pique and hold my attention. Its highlight is warm and crispy breadcrumb-coated goat cheese and tarragon patties. If these are in a salad, I’ll happily eat my greens.

The strong tarragon flavor complements the tangy and creamy goat cheese, the crispy breadcrumbs add a nice, delicate crunch and the pomegranate seeds round out everything with their sweetness. The baby kale is strong enough in texture and flavor to hold up to the patties. (But don’t feel that you have to use kale, arugula, spinach or romaine will work just as well).

I debated wether to call this an appetizer or a main course and eventually settled on main. You can make it an appetizer but I would suggest only one patty per person for that.

Hope you like it!


Food Photography and Styling: I don’t think I had ever photographed baby kale prior to this occasion (cause I’m neither a big kale eater nor friend of photographing the color green) and I was pleasantly surprised with how sturdy and also pretty this vegetable is. Many of the leaves had a nicely curved shape and the whole thing sat on the set for about 15 minutes without drooping a bit.

I arranged the leaves such that they formed almost a pinwheel pattern with stems sticking out toward the plate rim every so often and I cut one of the patties open to show what’s inside. The dressing was not exactly a looker but thankfully it didn’t distract too much. I lit the set from the side with my strobe and blocked the light in the top and bottom parts of the frame to create a spotlight on the dish.

Camera Settings: Nikon D600, 105mm, f/8, 1/125 sec., ISO 100. One Hensel Integra Pro Plus 500 Monolight, 35″ x 58″ Softbox.


Salad with Baked Goat Cheese Tarragon Patties Recipe

serves 2


For the goat cheese patties:

  • 6 ounces goat cheese
  • 2 slices white or whole wheat sandwich bread
  • 1 egg
  • 3 teaspoons chopped fresh tarragon

For the dressing:

  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh tarragon
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 1 garlic clove, pressed or minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon red wine vinegar
  • 3.5 tablespoons olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste

For the salad:

  • greens of your choice (baby kale, romaine, spinach, arugula, etc.)
  • pomegranate seeds



For the goat cheese patties:

  1. Heat the oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Beat the egg and put on one plate.
  3. Process the bread into crumbs and place them on another plate.
  4. Divide the cheese into four pieces.
  5. Evenly divide the tarragon and fold into the cheese with your hands.
  6. Form the cheese into disks with your hands.
  7. Roll the cheese disks in the egg and then in the breadcrumbs.
  8. Place the disks on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and drizzle with a little bit of olive oil.
  9. Bake the cheese until golden brown on the outside (10 to 15 minutes).

For the dressing:

  1. While the cheese is in the oven, mix all dressing ingredients together until smooth.

For the salad:

  1. Assemble everything on plates, drizzle with dressing and serve immediately.


  1. Kevin | keviniscooking says:

    Now this I saw already on FB this morning and boy it is a beauty. Not only in the photography, the placement of the ingredients in the killer bowl (I want it!), but the ingredients.YUM.
    I think the goat cheese and tarragon combo is wonderful and the Worcestershire sauce in the dressing intrigues me.

    • Nicole B. says:

      Thank you, Kevin! That really is a good bowl, I got it on etsy a while ago and I like the way it looks on this dark wood tray.

  2. Steffani says:

    Yay! You made this for us once, and I loved it! Now I don’t have to beg you for the recipe :).

    I love the photograph! The red of the pomegranate seeds sets off the rest of the composition beautifully. There’s something about the wedge of the goat cheese patty being cut out that I love, too, but I can’t put my finger on why – I just love the way it looks!

    Gorgeous – goat cheese is going on the grocery list this week!

    • Nicole B. says:

      That’s right! I make this all the time in the summer when the garden is pumping out arugula faster than we can eat it. Glad you like the photo (as I know you have a very good eye)!

  3. Traci | Vanilla And Bean says:

    Good Morning Nicole. You inspire me with every post. I appreciate your describing your thought process behind each shoot. Your recipe is mouthwateringly delicious, and I agree with Kevin. I too am intrigued with the Worcestershire in the dressing. Paired with the dijon it sounds tangy along side the mellow goat cheese and kale. Delicious! Looking forward to enjoying this!

  4. Sharon @ savormania says:

    The photo is amazing! Great job! Goat cheese salad is my favorite ever. I love how you turn the cheese into patties rather than simply topping the salad with slices of cheese. Will definitely try this! Pinned :)

  5. Ciao Florentina says:

    Well, I was gonna ask about the bowl but then I read the other comments, so Etsy spree it is. But I mostly wanted to say your photos are PERFECT ! It is like looking at a coffee table book of dreamy photos. Impecable !

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