Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Can't Be Beet!

I had never eaten a beet that wasn't pickled until just a few summers ago, when I resolved to start revisiting all the vegetables that I avoided in my youth. This was the first recipe I tried and it remains a favorite. It is from Giada De Laurentiis' Everyday Italian cookbook, and the combination of ingredients hits your palate just about everywhere. The season is right for spicy arugula and tasty new beets, but truthfully you can pretty much make this salad any time of year with tasty results. I recommend some nice Zingerman's Creamery goat cheese!

Beet and Goat Cheese Arugula Salad

1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
3 tablespoons shallots, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon honey
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
6 medium beets, cooked and quartered
6 cups fresh arugula
1/2 cup walnuts, toasted, coarsely chopped
1/4 cup dried cranberries or dried cherries
1/2 avocado, peeled, pitted, and cubed
3 ounces soft fresh goat cheese, coarsely crumbled

Line a baking sheet with foil. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.

1. Whisk the vinegar, shallots, and honey in a medium bowl to blend. Gradually whisk in the oil. Season the vinaigrette, to taste, with salt and pepper. Toss the beets in a small bowl with enough dressing to coat.

2. Place the beets on the foil and seal them up in the foil, creating an envelope. Roast until 25 minues, then open the foil envelope, toss the beets a bit, then roast uncovered for another 20 minutes or until they are tender and caramelized. Set aside and cool.

3. Toss the arugula, walnuts, and cranberries in a large bowl with enough vinaigrette to coat. Season the salad, to taste, with salt and pepper.

4. Mound the salad atop 4 plates. Arrange the beets around the salad. Sprinkle with the avocado and goat cheese, and serve.


kim said...

Thank you for posting this recipe! You know, after my trip to the market this morning (where I bought beets), I happen to have almost every ingredient. So I think I know what's on the menu for dinner tonight. Yum!


Anonymous said...

Beets have always kinda scared me, but this sounded good! Thanks!

Jen of A2eatwrite said...

Beautiful recipe! I'm always looking for new uses for beets (because I tend to make the same hot borsch all the time), so this looks wonderful!