“We got beets!”
Does anyone else remember that Simpsons line? Marge and Lisa are coming home from the grocery store, and an enthusiastic Lisa calls this out to Homer and Bart? If I’m honest I don’t, but my friend Maya does, and used to say this for a random laugh back in highschool. (Much of our humour was Simpsons-related at the time.) I’m not sure why, but this particular line has stuck with me, and I can’t buy or cook beets without hearing Lisa/Maya’s voice in my head.
Which I’ll admit, doesn’t happen that often. Beets are a rare occurrence in my home, so I don’t often get the chance to call this out to Andrew on returning from the farmer’s market. Not that he’d be so thrilled by that, anyway (he’s not a beet fan). I love their sweet, earthy flavour, but can never think of very many interesting ways to prepare them.
Last weekend though, I was done in by the lovely colour of this bunch. Convinced that I could overcome my beetblock, I bought them, with grand ideas of inventing inspiring recipes that would impress my readers and convert my boyfriend. Predictably, this never materialized, and the other day I settled on perhaps the most boring beet-related idea ever: a salad. With goat’s cheese. And walnuts. Are you asleep yet?
Despite its less-then-revolutionary roots, this salad is actually very good. I love the classic, if somewhat uncreative, pairing of beets and goat’s cheese; the flavours balance each other so well. Some chopped walnuts add necessary crunch, and the lemon juice keeps the whole thing bright and vibrant. Mark Bittman’s genius method of roasting individual beets means this is super-easy to put together, too.
So, while this recipe might not inspire Lisa’s level of enthusiasm, it’ll at least give you something to do with beets, should you fall prey to their spell and bring some home.
- Foil-roasted Beets
- from Mark Bittman
- 1. Preheat your oven to 200°C/425°F.
2. Trim beets and scrub them well, then wrap each one individually in the foil.
3. Place the foil-wrapped beets on a baking sheet, and bake for 45-60 minutes, depending on their size. Beets are done when you can piece them easily with a knife (they may finish cooking at different times).
4. Remove beets from the oven and let cool in the foil. At this point, you can either use them immediately, or keep them (still wrapped in the foil) in the fridge for up to 3 days.
- Note: When you unwrap the cooled beets, the skin should easily peel away.
- Roasted Beet, Goat’s Cheese and Walnut Salad
- These quantities are per person; multiply as needed
- 3-4 roasted beets (brought to room temperature if chilled)
small handful walnuts, roughly chopped
1 tsp. chopped fresh parsley
1 tsp. lemon juice
2 tsp. olive oil
sea salt and black pepper
30g soft goat’s cheese
- 1. Peel the beets, chop them into bite-sized chunks and place into a large bowl. Add the walnuts, lemon juice and olive oil and season to taste.
2. Transfer salad to a serving dish and scatter over the goat’s cheese. Serve.