Beet, lentil and mint salad with pomegranate molasses and orange dressing

A stunning combination for a healthy, clean tasting winter salad.

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Serves 4 to 6

3-4 fl oz extra virgin olive oil
1 small leek, cut in half lengthways and sliced thin
1 small red onion, sliced
4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
8 oz Puy lentils
1 tbsp each of chopped rosemary, thyme and sage.
3-4 fl oz mirin
3 tbsp white miso
1-2 fl oz soy sauce
5 oz raw beets, peeled and cut into fine strips
A large handful of mint leaves, shredded
A couple of handfuls of baby wild arugula or rocket
About 4 oz Greek feta cheese to crumble over the top (Optional)

Dressing
1 tbsp pomegranate molasses
4 tbsp Cabernet Sauvignon vinegar
juice and grated zest of 1/2 large orange
3 fl oz (approx) of olive oil
pinch of salt

Heat the oil in a medium saucepan, add the leek, onion and garlic and cook, stirring over a high heat until caramelized. Add the lentils, herbs and mirin and continue to fry for 4 minutes, stirring from time to time.

Add enough water to cover lentils by 1 inch, then bring to the boil and simmer for about 20 minutes, or until tender (add a little more water if needed).
Remove from the heat and stir in the miso and soy sauce. Check the seasoning, adding more soy if needed, then leave to cool.

Whisk together all the dressing ingredients. Toss the beets, mint and lentils together in a bowl with a generous slosh of the dressing. Add salad leaves and mix gently. Sprinkle over the feta cheese, if wanted.
Serve immediately

Easy beet and goat cheese terrine with pistachios and basil

I saw this recipe by Amy Stafford on her blog, “A healthy life for me” and immediately loved the idea of it. We adore beets and goat cheese and it’s a fairly easy one to put together and impress your guests.

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Serves: 8

6 red beet
6 yellow beets
10 oz of goat cheese, room temperature
¼ cup of salted pistachios, shelled and finely crushed in food processor
Fresh basil leaves, cut into slivers (about 6 large leaves)
zest from ½ lemon
Pinch of kosher salt and ground black pepper
¼ cup of olive oil + more for drizzling

In two separate pans boil water.
Add the yellow beets to one pan and the red to the other and cook for 30 minutes.
Remove with a slotted spoon and set aside to cool.
Take plastic wrap and line a loaf pan letting the plastic wrap overhang on both sides, enough so that you can grab wrap to lift out finished terrine.

In a bowl, add the goat cheese, lemon zest, olive oil, salt, pepper and pistachios and stir to blend.
When the beets have cooled, peel and slice thinly.
Line the pan with a layer of yellow beets, slightly overlapping.
Then add a ¼ cup of goat cheese mixture, spreading over the beets.
Add a sprinkle of basil slivers and a drizzle of olive oil.
Continue layering the yellow beets, goat cheese, basil and olive oil four times and then start with red, continuing the layering four times.

Make sure that you finish with a beet layer and drizzle of olive oil. (you will not reach the top of the pan.
Take the plastic wrap flaps and cover your last layer
Place heavy cans on top of the plastic to compress the terrine.
Place in the refrigerator for 2 or more hours.
When you remove, unwrap and use the plastic to lift the terrine out of the pan.
Slice and serve with a drizzle of olive oil

Beet panna cotta with Meyer lemon mousse

What a surprise to see this recipe! It is sensational and the sweetness of the beets is perfect in the panna cotta, especially when slowly simmered in the cream, producing the most wonderful deep purple color. Do try it!!

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Servings: 6
Beet Panna Cotta

½ lb red beets, peeled, cut into ½” pieces
2 cups heavy cream
½ tsp kosher salt
1 tsp unflavored powdered gelatin
3 tbsp honey
½ tsp vanilla extract

Meyer Lemon Mousse

1 tbsp finely grated Meyer lemon zest
½ cup fresh Meyer lemon juice
½ cup (1 stick) chilled unsalted butter, cut into pieces, divided
½ cup sugar, divided
4 large egg yolks
1 large egg
½ cup chilled heavy cream

You will need six 8 oz glasses or ramekins

Bring the beets, cream, and salt to a simmer over medium heat in a medium saucepan. Cover, reduce the heat and simmer very gently until the beets are tender, 25–30 minutes. Let cool slightly.
Meanwhile, combine the gelatin and 2 Tbsp cold water in a blender; let sit 5 minutes for the gelatin to soften.
Transfer the beets and their cooking liquid to blender; add the honey and vanilla and purée until smooth. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve into a large bowl; discard the solids.
Divide the purée among the glass dishes and chill until set, 3½–4 hours.

Do Ahead: Panna cotta can be made 3 days ahead. Cover and keep chilled.

Meyer lemon mousse

Bring the lemon zest and juice, ¼ cup butter, and ¼ cup sugar to a simmer over medium heat in a medium saucepan, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Remove from the heat.
Whisk the egg yolks, egg, and remaining ¼ cup sugar in a small bowl until pale and thick, about 2 minutes. Whisking constantly, slowly pour the hot lemon mixture into the egg mixture.
Transfer back to the saucepan and cook over medium-low heat, whisking constantly, until the curd is thickened and the whisk leaves a trail, about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and add the remaining ¼ cup butter, whisking until melted and the curd is smooth.
Transfer the curd to a bowl and cover with plastic wrap, pressing directly onto the surface. Chill until cold, at least 2 hours.
When ready to serve, whisk the cream in a small bowl to soft peaks and gently fold into the curd. Spoon the mousse over the panna cotta.

Do Ahead: The lemon curd can be made 3 days ahead. Cover and chill.

Hot mustard lentils with beets and spicy sausage

All my favorite ingredients on one plate. Such a lovely mixture of flavors and textures and so good for you too.

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Serves 4

1lb 2 oz raw beets (beetroot)
4 tbsp olive oil, divided
1 large red onion, cut into wedges
2 garlic cloves, finely sliced
1 tsp caraway seeds
1lb of lamb Merguez sausages or another spicy sausage of your choice
2 x 8oz pouches of the ready-cooked Puy lentils
3 oz watercress, stalks removed
FOR THE DRESSING
4 tsp Dijon mustard
1 tsp Colmans English mustard
Juice of 1 lemon
4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

Heat the oven to 350 F. Top and tail the beets, then peel and cut into wedges.
Put the beets in a roasting tin, drizzle over 2 tbsp of olive oil and toss with the onion, garlic and caraway seeds. Roast for 45 minutes until the beets are tender and the onion is sticky and charred.
In another roasting pan, put in 2 tbsp olive oil and the sausages. Put these in the same oven about 10 minutes later, roasting for about 35 to 40 minutes until golden brown. (Alternatively, broil the sausages until golden brown on all sides)

Make the dressing by whisking together all the ingredients. While the beets are still warm, toss with the lentils and dressing.
Add the watercress and serve with the sausages.

Beet carpaccio with blue cheese mousse.

So light and the mix of blue cheese and beets with a dash of walnut oil and white balsamic is superb!

Serves 4
2 oz good blue cheese, crumbled
1 oz cream cheese, softened
kosher salt and black pepper to taste
1 cup cooked and sliced asparagus, cut on a bias into 1/2 inch pieces
2 medium beets
2 tbsp chopped fresh chives
1/3 cup heavy cream
3 tbsp walnut oil
3 tbsp white balsamic vinegar

Preheat the oven to 400 F

Combine the blue cheese and cream cheese together in a small bowl and set aside.

Wash the beets under cold water to remove any dirt, then wrap them in a large piece of alumium foil.
Set the pouch on a baking sheet and bake until easily pierced with a fork, about 45 to 55 mins.

Place the heavy cream in a chilled metal mixing bowl. Using an electric mixer, whip the cream into soft peaks. Use a spatula to fold a small bit of the whipped cream into the blue cheese mixture to lighten it. Then add the remaining whipped cream and gently fold until no streaks remain. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

In a small bowl, combine the chives and white balsamic vinegar.
Slowly drizzle in the walnut oil, whisking continuously, to create a vinaigrette. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Peel the skin off the cooked beets once they are cool enough to handle.
Slice the beets very thinly on a mandoline or as thin as possible with a sharp knife.
They must be paper thin. Use gloves or your hands will be bright red!

Arrange 4 to 5 slices of beet in a circle or in a row on a plate.
Use 2 spoons to form a quenelle or football shaped dollop of the blue cheese mousse.
Set this in the center of the beets.
Sprinkle the asparagus pieces around the plate, then drizzle with the walnut vinaigrette.
Season with a final sprinkle of salt

Deep fried beets with spicy mayonnaise

 

This will make any frown turn upside down!

Makes 2 servings (easily increased)

1lb beets (golden or red)
1 qt oil for deep frying
1/3 cup cornstarch or rice flour
Kosher salt
1/4 cup mayonnaise (or Japanese mayonnaise, which is a little sweeter)
1/4 tsp sriracha or sambal oelek (at Japanese stores or on Amazon)
furkake seasoning and /or shichimi togarashi seasoning (at Japanese stores or on Amazon)

Preheat the oven to 400 F.
Trim the roots and stem ends off the beets and wrap them in aluminum foil.
Roast the beets for about 45 minutes to an hour or until tender.

Carefully unwrap the beets and remove the skins by rubbing with a paper towel, Cut them into rough cubes about 1 inch each.

Fill a Dutch oven or large stockpot with about 2 inches of oil, or use your electric deep fryer according to the instructions of the deep fryer. Get the temperature to 375 F.
Line a baking sheet with paper towels in preparation for the fried beets coming out of the hot oil.

Toss the beet chunks in the rice flour, or the cornstarch in a large mixing bowl, shaking the beets between your fingers to remove the excess flour.

Put the beets in the hot oil and fry until crispy and golden brown, about 4 to 5 minutes. Skin the beets out of the oil with a slotted wire spoon.

Sprinkle the beets with kosher salt, furikake and shichimi togarashi.

Whisk the mayonnaise with the samba oelek or sriracha and serve alongside the fried beets.

Sprinkle the mayonnaise with extra furkake and /or shichimi togarashi seasoning

 

Golden beet and leek fritters with yoghurt and lemon sauce

I’m always on the lookout for interesting vegetarian options for dinner and this is a really light and lovely starter from a fellow blogger.

Yields 12 fritters

3 medium golden beets, peeled and shredded
3 leeks, trimmed, cleaned and thinly sliced
1/4 cup garbanzo bean flour (or all purpose flour)
1 large egg, well beaten
1/2 tsp ground cumin (I roast my own)
1/2 tsp ground coriander
1/2 tsp yellow mustard seeds
1 tsp salt
1 tsp freshly cracked black pepper
olive oil for frying

For the sauce

1/2 cup yoghurt
juice of 1/2 lemon

Toss the shredded beets, leeks, egg, flour, spices, salt and pepper together on a bowl.

Blend the yoghurt and lemon to make the sauce

Coat the bottom of a cast iron or other heavy skillet with olive oil

When the oil is hot, drop tablespoons of the beet mixture into the pan, flattening them out into rounds. You should hear a strong sizzle when the mixture hits the pan, or your oil isn’t hot enough.

Cook until golden and tender, about 3 minutes per side.

Drain on paper towels and serve hot with the lemon yoghurt

 

Beet and Goat cheese Napoleans

I love beets and goat cheese and this is so tasty, easy and light.

Serves 4
5 large beets, roasted then peeled and cut across into 1/4″ slices
1 cup rice vinegar
1 cup sugar
9 oz goat cheese, softened
4 tsp minced fresh chives
4 tsp minced fresh parsley
2&1/2 tsp minced fresh thyme
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
3/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1/4 tsp grated orange zest
1 small shallot, minced
3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
3 tbsp hazelnut oil
Kosher salt to taste
3 tbsp chopped hazelnuts
Using a 2 5/8″ cookie cutter cut out 20 of the beet slices. (reserve scraps for another use, like borscht or a salad)
In a 12″ skillet put the rice vinegar and sugar and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat to medium low and working in batches, cook beet slices, turning once, for about 2 minutes.
Transfer the slices to a paper towel-lined baking sheet. Pat dry and let chill.
Stir the goat cheese together with the chives, parsley, thyme and pepper in a bowl. Set aside.
Bring the orange juice to a boil in a 1 qt saucepan over medium high heat. Cook until reduced to 1/3 cup, 4 – 5 minutes and let cool.
Transfer the orange juice to a bowl and add the remaining thyme, balsamic vinegar, zest and shallots.
While whisking, drizzle in the olive oil and hazelnut oil. Whisk until smooth.
Season vinaigrette with salt and pepper and let chill.
To serve;
Put 1 beet slice on a work surface, spread about 1 tbsp cheese mixture over it. Top the cheese with another beet slice, pressing down so the cheese oozes to the edge.
Repeat to create a stack with 4 layers of cheese between 5 beet slices.
Make 4 stacks in all.
Slice each stack carefully into 4 wedges.
Drizzle some vinaigrette over each plate, garnish with chopped nuts.
You can serve with a little mixed greens if you like

Seared fish with beet, avocado, garbanzo bean and pecan salsa

This is so delicious and light! You can use a firm fish like halibut or even better, a fillet of wild salmon works really well with the salsa. It’s very pretty on the plate as the garbanzo beans turn bright pink!

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6 small diced cooked beets (If you roast your own, season them with salt and pepper, olive oil and balsamic vinegar, then cover them with foil and roast at 400 F for 1 hr 20 mins or until tender, then peel them, and allow to cool)
1 x 15.5 oz can garbanzo beans (chickpeas) drained and rinsed
8 chopped scallions
¾ cup pecan pieces, toasted in the oven until browned
1 seeded and chopped red chili
3 tbsp chopped fresh mint
2 tsp ground roasted cumin
4 tbsp fresh lemon juice
1 1/2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
5 tbsp olive oil
Salt and pepper

Put the diced beets into a good-sized bowl. Add the chopped scallions, seeded and chopped red chili, chopped fresh mint, toasted pecans, cumin, lemon juice, balsamic and olive oil.
Mix and season well with salt and pepper. Add more balsamic or lemon juice if you think it needs it.

Season 4 fish fillets and sauté in hot oil over medium high heat on both sides until just done and crispy on the outside then serve on or beside a good dollop of the beet salsa.

Quinoa, beet, feta and caper salad

I had a version of this at Hugos restaurant in Hollywood and absolutely adored the combination of flavors. I rushed home, via the supermarket and immediately made a version of it that is actually better!
I don’t want to dictate measurements too much as you can pretty much improvise.

1 cup quinoa
2 cups water or chicken broth. (I like to use chicken broth as it gives more flavor)
4 large beets, roasted, peeled and chopped small
finely chopped red onion and scallions
finely chopped raw carrots
1/2 cup raisins
finely chopped fresh Italian parsley and fresh mint
1 tbsp capers, drained, but keep the liquid to use in the dressing.
3/4 cup crumbled Greek feta cheese (or 1/2 cup crumbled blue cheese if you prefer)
1/2 cup lightly toasted walnut pieces

cayenne pepper
Extra virgin olive oil
good balsamic vinegar
freshly squeezed lemon juice

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees
Roast the beets individually wrapped in aluminum foil and a few drops of water per beet so as not to dry out while they’re cooking. They will take about 1 hour or even more. Pierce each foil parcel with a fork or skewer to test they’re cooked, then remove and peel when a bit cooler.
Chop the beets into small cubes.
Cook the quinoa in boiling water or broth for 15 minutes until all the liquid has gone, then put into a large bowl and allow to cool.
Add the chopped beets, chopped onions, chopped herbs, raisins, capers, crumbled feta or blue cheese, walnut pieces and mix well.
Pour in olive oil, balsamic vinegar, lemon juice and season well. Add some caper juice, a little cayenne pepper and mix well.
Leave in the fridge for 1 hour for the flavors to mingle.