It's hard to believe that we are now just weeks away from rhubarb, strawberries, and the start of CSA distributions and farmers markets in New England. In preparation for this season, I'm exploring cookbooks, websites (the farm already has some great ideas, too), and just generally keeping my eyes peeled for healthy new recipes and ideas to share with you in the months ahead. Considering beets and spring onions are some of the earlier crops to be harvested, I thought it would be nice to share with you this simple preparation for roasted beets. Delicious on a salad or sauteed greens (how about those from the beets themselves?), sweet and tender beets tossed in a tangy vinaigrette are great served cold or hot. With all the beets that I frequently pick out for my weekly share, I predict I'll be making these, along with many a slaw and salad, for those hot and humid lunches on the farm.
Dressed Beets with Spring Onion
Makes about 6 servings
- 3 medium beets (about 2 lbs, roots only)
- olive oil to drizzle
- 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 1/4 tsp Dijon mustard
- 1/4 tsp maple syrup (optional)
- 1/4 cup oil (I used walnut oil)
- 1-2 small spring onions, thinly-sliced
- salt and pepper to taste
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Wash the beets, drizzle lightly with olive oil, and wrap in aluminum foil. Place the wrapped beets in a baking dish and roast until tender throughout, about 45-60 minutes. Remove them from the oven and allow to cool for five minutes or until you can handle them.
While waiting for the beets to cool, slice the onion or scallion, separating the white from green pieces, and set aside. In a small bowl, whisk together the vinegars, mustard, sugar (optional), oil, and salt until well combined.
Using clean hands, rub off the beets' skin (tough spots can be removed with a peeler). Slice the beets in half and then again into 1/4"-thick half-rounds or smaller; transfer to a deep bowl. Add the white parts of the onion and dressing, tossing or mixing with a rubber spatula to coat evenly. The dish can be served immediately but tastes even better when allowed to marinate for another 12-24 hours in the fridge. When ready to serve, sprinkle with the green parts of the onion. Consume within 5-7 days.
Dressed beets atop a bed of spring mix with red quinoa and goat cheese (a sprinkle of feta, sunflowers seeds, and balsamic vinegar were added after this picture was taken to make for an awesome lunch.)
Images by Rebekah Carter (2011-2012).