I publicly outed myself (and my entire family) as decidedly not beet fans a few years ago in an article published for one of the alternative weeklies, which prompted just about every chef I know to come crawling out of the woodwork with suggestions as to how I could prepare beets so that we would like them. I managed to find some ways we like to eat them, but it’s still not a popular dinner item. This changed recently however, when I stumbled upon a serving presentation that actually caused me to hear “Can we please have that again?”.
It was, admittedly, a phoned in, clean out the pantry sort of dinner on a night that was way too hot and busy to do more than dump a few things in a bowl and go with it. I had gotten some beets at the farmer’s market and roasted them. I had some Mount Alto feta style goat cheese from Caromont Farm that needed to get eaten up, some fresh buttery local lettuce and red quinoa. I chopped the greens, stacked the quinoa on top, added sliced beets, cheese and scattered some pecans. The whole thing got dressed in a vinaigrette I had made a few days before – olive oil, red wine vinegar, lemon juice, s&p.
So easy, so simple and so well received that I can report we’ve eaten it three times in the last week. Edie even got up to go to the market with me Saturday morning to ensure I got all the proper ingredients for it again – lettuce from Crazy Farm, beets from Whisper Hill and Caromont’s feta. Terroir is everything you know.
The Best Beet Salad
Lettuce – something buttery is preferred, but not essential
Cooked, cooled quinoa
Roasted beets – (Note: I like to make a foil boat, add some water and roast the beets in their skins. I tend to stick them in the oven when I have something else in there, so I’ve roasted them at 325° for an hour and a half and I’ve roasted them at 425° for a half hour. Both worked beautifully. I let them cool completely before removing the skin, which just falls off at that point. I store beets in the fridge unpeeled until I’m ready to use them up. They keep for several days once roasted.)
Handful of nuts – pecans or walnuts both work nicely, crumbled
Vinaigrette – 2:1 Olive Oil to Red Wine Vinegar with juice of half lemon, salt & pepper
Layer the first five ingredients, drizzle with vinaigrette and serve.
This post is part of Our Growing Edge, a monthly blogging event to encourage bloggers to try new food related things. Jordan and Cindy from My Daughter and I are the hosts for this month’s event.
If you have a blog and you are eating or cooking something new this month, more information on joining up here.