Irish Cashel Salad | Recipe | St. Patrick's Day Dinner

In preparing for our St. Patrick's Day dinner, I discovered a wonderful Irish blue cheese called Cashel.  This cheese was the first blue cheese developed in Ireland.  Cashel is made from the milk of Friesian cows and is made entirely by hand.  I was intrigued and thought it would be a unique ingredient in a salad.  Cashel is available at specialty stores or online.  If you can't find Cashel, substitute any blue cheese.

I only used ingredients that are readily grown and harvested in Ireland to try to keep this as "authentic" as possible.

Irish Cashel Salad Recipe
Yields: 6 servings

1/2 Tbsp Dijon mustard
1-1/2 Tbsp sherry wine vinegar
1 tsp red-wine vinegar
1/4 c olive oil
Salt and Pepper
Mixed spring greens
1 Granny Smith apple, cored and diced
6 Tbsp dried currants
4 oz crumbled Cashel cheese

1. Combine mustard and vinegars in a mini-chop and process until frothy.  With the food processor running, slowly add the olive oil in a thin steady stream. (This can be done by leaving the insert in the feed tube and letting the oil drip through the hole in the insert.)Transfer vinaigrette to a tightly sealed jar and keep refrigerated until ready to use.  Mix well before using.
2. Place a handful of spring greens on each plate.  Top with a slice of apple, 1 Tbsp dried currants and a sprinkling of Cashel.
3. Drizzle a 1/2 Tbsp of vinaigrette over each salad.

Note: Cashel is rather strong, so a little goes a long way.  You can assemble the salad in a large bowl, but I find the good stuff is left at the bottom.  If you assemble each salad individually, then everyone is sure to get equal portions of the apple, currants and Cashel. You may notice that on my original menu I had caramelized apples.  I ran out of time.  If you do want to caramalize the apples, slice them instead of dicing.  Melt some butter in a non-stick skillet.  Add apples and completely coat.  Add some sugar and melt, stirring often, about 10 minutes, until apples are softened and slightly browned.