GOLDEN BEET AND WALNUT SALAD

I prefer golden beets because they don’t turn your hands red when you prepare them. Often cooks pair beets with goat cheese but I prefer the nutty taste of gruyère or comté cheese.

8 cups mixed salad lettuces, washed and chopped
4 to 5 medium golden beets
1 bay leaf
2 tablespoons olive oil
3–4 leeks
3 garlic cloves
¼ cup chopped parsley
Pinch of fennel seed
Sea salt
¾ cup walnuts
Large pinch of dried herbs like thyme or marjoram
¼ cup olive or walnut oil
2 tablespoons orange or tangerine marmalade
3 ounces gruyère cheese

Boil the beets in a saucepan covered with salted water and bay leaf until done (approximately 20–35 minutes).

Cut the leeks into rings, rinse in colander to remove sand. Press the garlic. Sauté the leeks, garlic and fennel seed in the oil until soft and lightly browned. Salt. Add parsley at the very end.

In another pan, sauté the walnuts until browned, adding the dried herbs at the end. When beets are cool enough to handle, slip the peels off and slice. Combine the beets, sautéed leeks and walnuts and toss with the oil and the citrus marmalade. Arrange on a platter of mixed greens, and top with grated gruyère cheese.


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