Golden beetroot and goat’s cheese salad makes a very elegant entree or a light lunch. Beetroots have a sweet and earthy flavour. I think they go rather well with the plump golden raisins, creamy goat’s cheese and crunchy roasted hazelnuts and buckwheat in this salad. I found these golden beetroots at my local market https://www.farmerandson.com.au. The local market sells varieties of fruit and vegetables (with less packaging!) that I can’t buy at the supermarket. Do you like to shop at your local growers’ market?
Beetroots were initially cultivated in the Mediterranean for their leaves. The Greek translation is ‘teutlion’, because they bear a similarity to squid tentacles. Did you know that in some cultures they’re considered to be an aphrodisiac? Aphrodite, goddess of love in Greek mythology, ate beetroots to enhance her appeal. Ancient Romans also believed in their amorous qualities. Frescoes of beetroots can be found on the walls of the Lupanare brothel in Pompeii.
Uncooked beetroots keep well in the fridge for a couple of weeks. They can be julienned, shaved or grated raw into a salad. Or, they can be blended into a delicious juice with orange, carrot and ginger. Cook the leaves with garlic, chilli and olive oil, or add them to a quiche or a frittata. There are a few steps for this golden beetroot and goat’s cheese salad, but they’re not complicated. The beetroots, hazelnuts and buckwheat can all be prepared in advance, and then added to the salad when you’re ready to serve.
If you’re looking for more inspiration for your beetroots, you might like to try this recipe for roasted beetroot and cinnamon soup – https://atamandastable.com.au/roasted-beetroot-and-cinnamon-soup/
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Golden Beetroot and Goat's Cheese Salad
- 6 small golden beetroot, washed, leaves and ends removed
- 2 cups salad leaves
- 4 cubes marinated goat's cheese (approx 4 tbsp) I used Meredith Dairy goat's cheese
- 1/2 cup golden raisins I like Market Grocer golden raisins
- 1/4 cup buckwheat
- 1/4 cup hazelnuts
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 4 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 2 tbsp honey
- flaked sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Preheat the oven to 160°C (140°C fan-forced). Line a small baking dish with baking paper.
- Whisk together the olive oil, honey and 2 tbsp of apple cider vinegar. Drizzle over the beetroot, and season with salt and pepper. If any of the beetroots are significantly larger than the others, cut them in half to shorten the cooking time. Cover the dish tightly with foil and roast for about 1 hour until the beetroots are soft when pierced with a knife.
- Set aside to cool, or store the beetroots with their cooking juices (you will need this for the dressing) in an airtight container in the fridge until ready to serve.
- Roast the hazelnuts for about 10 minutes on a separate tray simultaneously with the beetroots. They'll be golden brown when they're cooked, and their skins will start to shed a little. Remove the nuts from the oven and set aside, or cool and store them in an airtight container until ready to use.
- Soak the raisins in the remaining 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar for about 10 minutes. Reserve the liquid for the dressing.
- Toast the buckwheat in a dry fry pan until golden brown.
- Assemble the mixed leaves on a large flat plate or 4 small plates, then place the beetroots, raisins and goat's cheese on top. Whisk the beetroot juices and raisin vinegar together, then drizle over the salad (you may not need all of it).
- Scatter the hazelnuts and buckwheat over the top and serve immediately.