Saturday, May 7, 2016

The Beet Salad Recipe of Your Dreams

I don't know about you, but when dealing with vegetables, rarely does the word 'gorgeous' come to mind. Vegetables tend to look a bit—well, not the most attractive. Stand in the produce section, and take a look around. Fruit definitely wins out in the looks category. Veggies tend to remind you of gawky, bad-skinned, knob-kneed teenagers with consistently bad hair-days.

That is, until you look inside.

Suddenly, some veggies become positively striking. Like the beet I couldn't help but share in my old post Talk About Random.  Take a look at that beauty!

Maybe their gorgeousness is part of the reason why I've become addicted, but beets have suddenly turned into my go-to veggie for an easy lunch salad. Chef Reiton hates beets, no matter how hard he tries to like them, so my only way of eating them is when he isn't here. Lunchtime has become perfect for that.

"So—a beet salad???you say (I can see that lip tweaking...).

Believe me, yes, and it's delish and incredibly easy. That is, after you roast the beets. Which is also easy. I'll even show you how tomorrow because I'm going to roast some tonight (please note: TONIGHT is key in my easy roasting and peeling method).

Alright, so back to the salad. In Real Simple's November 2015 issue there was an article on easy side dishes to create for the holidays. Modestly introducing their beet salad recipe was a small notation that their beet salad is so good, the RS crew make it all the time for their gatherings.  Intrigued, I made it for our Christmas dinner, and the entire family gave a resounding 'YES!' to it's deliciousness—despite it being made with beets.

Since then I have tweaked the recipe to fit with ingredients that I tend to have at home and that I can quickly toss together for lunch. Almost all of the ingredient amounts are to what I'm in the mood for that day. So, here you go: a beet salad that is remarkably good for you, gorgeous, and incredibly delicious.

beet salad with ricotta salata, parsley and toasted pecans

Ingredients:

  • 1 roasted beet, cooled, skinned and cut into wedges
  • a small (1-in. x 1 in.-ish) hunk of ricotta salata, a firm ricotta cheese, sold in wedges in the "nice cheese" section
  • a small pinch of the tops of some fresh Italian, flat-leaf parsley sprigs, roughly chopped 
  • chopped pecans, toasted (toss in a small skillet over medium heat until they smell nutty)
  • kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • olive oil
  • red wine vinegar

Directions:
  1. Place beet wedges on a plate or in a bowl.
  2. Crumble ricotta salata over the beet wedges.
  3. Sprinkle with chopped parsley.
  4. Sprinkle with chopped, toasted pecans.
  5. Drizzle with olive oil and red wine vinegar.
  6. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  7. EAT!
If you want to print the recipe, click "Print this recipe" below for a download and/or a print option.

beet salad printable recipe card

Come back tomorrow for a quick how-to video on roasting and peeling beets–something I used to hate doing because the damn peel never came off easily. No more! I'll show you how.

Until then, here's to those of us who may be knob-kneed with lots of bad hair-days but strive to be beautiful on the inside! Yeah, beets!

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