This is one of my favourite things to have when I go out to eat. And it always costs as much as a full meal, and you find it in the appetizer section of the menu. Maybe if N. America understood to not put 300% tax on French cheeses, maybe it won’t cost as much as a steak. On the other hand, I have my mother’s voice in my head, saying that ‘the human body is not a camel’, but I can’t help having these things while I still have access to, and then… well, that future looks, with regards to cheese, a bit deserted, so I try not to think about it.
This is a “recipe” by David Lebovitz. If you see the original recipe, he will tell you that it is not a recipe but a technique and it is for you to take it from there. I did have to adjust the breadcrumbs, since my baguette butt end was too small 🙂 So, I added some shredded wheat 🙂 Loved it! If you have any breadcrumbs left over, prepared like this, you can freeze them or refrigerate them and use them to top pasta dishes or other gratin.
David mentions to choose les petits crottins, or little poop, but they’re everything but. They are perfect. Now, I know what you are facing and there are no crottins in sight (not even on the sidewalk hahah) so you can use a log of goat cheese and cut it in rounds of 2 cm. If the log has one of those fat rinds, I would remove that. It will not absorb the marinate and the crumbs won’t stick. You want the pure creamy cheese.
Because I was feeling fancy and because I thought it would go very well, I used the aged balsamic from the Strawberry/Rhubarb Compote. All you need to do is warm it up in a bain marie and drizzle over. Do not overcook it in the bain marie, it just needs to be drizzable.
If you are willing to splurge on goat cheese, this is probably the best way to enjoy it. Yes, it is lovely added to things where you would use other cheeses as well, but here, it shines, because it is by itself and it is being itself. Best.
2 medium crottins
dried thyme or other dry herbs
1. Place the cheese in a container that would hold it snuggly, pour over enough olive oil to be maybe halfway up the crottin. Sprinkle over the herbs. Turn over the cheese a couple of times in this marinade to coat it with the oil and herbs. Let it marinate in the fridge up to 2 days. I did it for 1 day and I turned the cheese a couple of times in those 24h. You would see that the olive oil will start softening the goat cheese. Mmmm…. Keep the marinade. Use it later in this recipe or if you still have a lot, use the oil to dress a salad, let’s say.
1/2 – 3/4 cup breadcrumbs (or mix of bread and shredded wheat)
salt and pepper to taste
1-2 tsp olive oil (use the marinade)
some fresh or frozen parsley/basil
a drizzle of aged balsamic or simply some good balsamic vinegar
balsamic/red wine vinegar or lemon juice for dressing the salad
1. Preheat the oven to 375F/180C.
2. Mix the breadcrumbs with the herbs and just as much olive oil so they stick together.
3. Bake them for 10 minutes and let them cool.
4. Drain the crottins from the oil and coat them in the breadcrumb mixture.
5. Bake for 8 minutes or until they’re very soft to the touch.
6. Dress the salad, place the crottins on top, by using a spatula (they’ll be very soft) and drizzle with the aged balsamic.
Enjoy this with some good quality bread on the side. I had some dark rye bread with sunflower seeds, and to tell you the truth, I didn’t feel like having any bread… I just wanted cheeeeese!