Beeten

   August 10, 2010 10:15 pm    4

 

OK. OK. OK, already. Nobody likes beets. Fine.

When I cook for my column, I cook and home and take the stuff to the office to have it photographed. Then my coworkers and I eat it. We critique it and then polish it off.

Sometimes, I come in with a clunker.

Roasted Beet Salad with Spicy Citrus Vinaigrette had square wheels.

Only three people even tasted it, and only one claimed to enjoy it. That person was resoundingly drowned out by complaints, wrinkled noses, strange looks and one gentle “It was fine.”

As I’ve written in this space before, I’m not beets’ biggest fan, either. But, as I’ve written, they’re in the garden. So, when I saw this recipe, I figured if you ROASTED beets, added feta CHEESE and WALNUTS and dressed the whole thing in a SPICY, tangy dressing they might just skirt the outside of EDIBLE.

And, in my opinion, the experiment worked out pretty well.  But my colleagues recoiled en masse.  I’ve discovered that if you say the word “beets,” you’ve already lost 80 percent of your intended audience.  I don’t think it would have mattered if I’d turned them into chocolate.

So, to keep it alive for a cyber second, I’ll share the recipe here instead. Maybe it will find someone else who has beets in their garden and a sense of adventure.

ROASTED BEET SALAD WITH SPICY CITRUS VINAIGRETTE
10 small red and/or golden beets
2 tablespoons orange juice
2 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoon original Tabasco® brand pepper sauce
1 teaspoon honey
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
3 cups baby lettuce greens, frisée or arugula
1 cup walnuts, toasted and coarsely chopped
1/2 cup blue cheese or feta cheese, crumbled
Preheat oven to 400° F.
Cut off tops of beets; place beets on large sheet of foil on baking sheet. Close foil to seal tightly. Roast beets 45 minutes or until tender when pierced with a fork. Remove from oven; let beets steam for 10 minutes. Open pouch; cool beets.
Combine orange juice, vinegar, Tabasco sauce, honey and salt in small bowl. Slowly whisk in olive oil until blended.

Remove skins from beets, when cool enough to handle, and cut into wedges. Toss beets with half of vinaigrette. Let stand 10 minutes to marinate.

Toss greens with remaining vinaigrette to serve. Place on serving platter. Top with beets; sprinkle with walnuts and crumbled cheese.
Serves 6.

 

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