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Posts Tagged ‘beets’

Holy cow! In the time that my baby has been sleeping, I have had time to clean up the kitchen, make this salad, photograph it, eat it AND write (however briefly) about it. A victory for mothers of active babies everywhere.

So what is it? A slight variation on my current favourite salad combo of greens, beets, goat cheese, apples and nuts. In a nod to Spring I’ve switched it up a bit with spinach as the foundation, golden beets, which are sweeter and sunnier than their dark red counterparts, toasted almonds and sliced strawberries.

Beets and strawberries? I know. But it works. Tossed with some balsamic vinegar, olive oil, a pinch of salt and a healthy grind of black pepper, it turns out that they all play together very nicely. And look how pretty.

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Impromptu beet and apple salad

One of the things I love about working from home, whether in a paid capacity or a parenting capacity, is that lunch is generally a foraging affair. I don’t have to be too organized about what kinds of leftovers I can bring to the office with me, whether they go together, or whether it’s more or less pret-a-manger. These days, when I get hungry for lunch I can open the fridge door and make use of the random little bits that accumulate.  In this case, it started with roasted beets.  And celery, which deserved a chance to break out of its usual functions as a flavour base in soups or a veggie snack.

I made this for lunch at home the other day, and although salad at my house is usually a bit of a slapdash affair, this time I decided to make it pretty. 

It reinforces the idea that sometimes, great food can simply be improvised.

Impromptu beet and apple salad
serves 4 to 6 as a side dish, or 2 as a main

1 head of red-leaf lettuce (an assortment of greens would also be delightful)
4 small roasted beets*
1 tart, crispy apple, such as a Granny Smith
2 ribs celery, cut into chunks 1/2″ thick
1/4 cup pepitas, toasted

Cider vinaigrette

1 tbsp. dijon mustard
1 tsp. maple syrup
1/2 tsp. curry paste (I use Patak’s – you could also use curry powder)
salt and pepper to taste
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1/3 cup to 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil

* Roasting beets is easy, but it can take a while. Simply scrub and trim the beets, toss them with a bit of olive oil and bake, covered with tin foil, at 400 degrees. Depending on their size, it usually takes no less than 45 minutes to cook them thoroughly. If you’re impatient like me, you can also halve or quarter them and they’ll cook more quickly.

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