Aged Gouda is a dense, golden-hued cheese with bits of crunchy milk solids that complement the crisp, pleasantly bitter red radicchio and endive in this winter salad. You can either cut the Gouda into small squares or use a vegetable peeler to create more delicate shavings.
Radicchio and Endive with Aged Gouda and Red Wine Vinaigrette
For the vinaigrette:
2 Tbs. balsamic vinegar
1⁄4 cup (2 fl. oz./60 ml) dry red wine such as Merlot or Syrah
1/2 tsp. sea salt
1/4 cup (2 fl. oz./60 ml) extra-virgin olive oil
4 heads Belgian endive, red if possible
1/2 head radicchio, torn into bite-sized pieces
1/2 cup (1/2 oz./15 g) fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves
1/4 lb. (125 g) aged Gouda, shaved or coarsely chopped
Freshly ground pepper
To make the vinaigrette, in a small saucepan over medium-low heat, combine the vinegar and wine and bring to a simmer. Cook until reduced by half, about 3 minutes. Set aside to cool. In the bottom of a large bowl, using a fork, mix together the salt, the reduced vinegar and wine mixture and the olive oil just to blend. Set aside.
Cut each endive in half lengthwise, and cut away the solid cone-shaped base. Coarsely chop the leaves, cut them lengthwise into strips, or leave them whole if small. Add the radicchio, parsley and endive to the bowl with the vinaigrette and toss well.
Divide the salad among individual plates. Top each with an equal amount of the cheese and a sprinkle of pepper. Serve immediately. Serves 4 to 6.
Recipe adapted from Williams-Sonoma Cheese, by Georgeanne Brennan