This goats cheese, apple & walnut recipe is tried and tested and an absolute crowd pleaser for a Christmas Day starter (or for any dinner party for that matter).  Sitting on a bed of rocket or salad leaves with walnuts, apple slices & a dash of cranberry dressing, it is an impressive starter. It’s easy to make and light on the tummy so there will be plenty of room for the turkey feast. You can prep much of this earlier in the day to save time.

We always use a Somerset goats cheese called Capricorn which comes as a 100g drum of cheese.  One drum cut horizontally gives two portions.  As it is protected in curd the cheese will not ooze out when grilled. We have not tried this with a standard goats cheese that is not encased in a curd so if this is your only option please do a trial run first! At the very least we suggest you individually create tin foil pods and wait until the grill is fully heated to minimise a melt down (the cheese and you).


What You’ll Need (serves 4)

2 Capricorn goats cheese drum (100g)
2 red apples (Braeburn are good)
a handful of walnuts (pecans would work equally as well)
Salad leaves (rocket, chicory or mixed)
Dash of olive oil
2-3 tabelspoons lemon juice


For the Cranberry Dressing

2 tablespoons cranberry jelly
1.5 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon honey


  1. Core the apple and cut into thin wedges (leave the skin on). To avoid them turning brown place in a bowl of water with a few squirts of lemon juice and cover.
  2. Grill the walnuts for approx one minute until they are crisp and warm.
  3. Arrange rocket / salad on plate. Drizzle with a little olive oil.
  4. Cut Capricorn goats cheese horizontally and place under medium heat grill for approx 2-3 minutes or until they are lightly browned. You don’t want puddles of watery cheese, just a nice amount of ooze!
  5. Arrange goats cheese on top of salad leaves and scatter walnuts (whole or roughly chopped), apple slices and drizzle with cranberry dressing.

To make cranberry dressing

  1. Using a clean bowl use 2 tbsp of juice from the apple bowl (discard the rest).
  2. Add the cranberry sauce, oil and honey with some seasoning.
  3. Whisk to form a dressing.