Starting a food blog named The Kitchen Beet demands the very first post have something to do with beets, no? There’s more than one reason I decided to title this blog as such, back when I started dreaming about it last year. When I think of beets, words like earthy, sweet, messy, vibrant, healthy and colorful come to mind. Those words are a pretty accurate description of the happenings in my kitchen and, if nothing else, the messy part always rings true.
Also, there’s the fact that my single craving during my pregnancy with the little mischievous girl in our family was beets. Not chocolate cake, or salt and pepper kettle chips, or ice cream, or pickles, or any other stereotypical pregnancy craving. Beets. I could not get enough of them. I love them. They make me feel good. We shall start here.
This beet and blackberry salad with dijon-shallot dressing is my favorite; I hope you love it too.
beet and blackberry salad
6 medium-sized beets, tops removed and scrubbed
4 oz organic blackberries
5 oz baby arugula
large handful slivered almonds or chopped pecans
4 oz soft goat cheese, crumbled
1/4 c good olive oil
1/4 c balsamic vinegar
2 tsp dijon mustard
sea salt + freshly ground black pepper
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Wrap the beets individually in aluminum foil and place on a rimmed baking sheet. Roast them for 45 – 55 min. A small, sharp knife inserted in the middle will indicate they are tender. Unwrap each beet and set aside for 10 minutes, until they are cool enough to handle.
Meanwhile, saute the shallots in a little olive oil over medium heat until just caramelized – about 5 minutes. Mix the shallots with the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, dijon mustard and about 2 tsp of salt and 1 tsp of freshly ground pepper. Whisk until emulsified, then set aside.
Back to the beets. If you enjoy unstained cutting boards, like my husband does, cover your cutting board with parchment paper. You should be able to very easily peel the skin off of the beets. After you peel them, cut into cubes and place in a large bowl. Pour half of the dressing over the beets, and mix to coat completely. Add the arugula, and mix again. Top with the blackberries, almonds and goat cheese. Drizzle a little more dressing over the top, and add salt and pepper if needed. Inform your family you may need a moment to collect yourself. Oh, wait. That’s just me. Enjoy!