All you need are a few beets

I love food, that is, I love good food. The colder it gets, the more I feel like getting into the kitchen to experiment with new colors, flavors, texture combinations - it is my way of relaxing and fending off the winter...or, if I am really honest, of avoiding writing a paper about marketing statistics. I started a food blog as a place to store my recipes, share them with whoever is interested, and hopefully get some feedback on what is working and what isn't. I can't promise how often there will be new posts - whenever inspiration strikes, or whenever there is fresh snow, temperatures below -10 C, new ingredients in the never know...

Today the fridge looks pretty empty, but there was a lonely pack of rucola in the corner, a few raw beets, some goat cheese, so I settled in to make a salad.

Roasted Beet and Goat Cheese Salad with Rucola with Balsamic vinaigrette
Serves 2

4 small beets, raw
4 cups (8 dl) fresh rucola
1/2 log of soft goat cheese

for the dressing
1/2 cup olive oil
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
juice of 1/2 lemon
1 tsp Dijon mustard
salt and pepper to taste

Heat the oven to 200 C (400 F). Prick the beets with a fork and place on a pan in the oven, or on a wire rack with a piece of parchment paper underneath to catch the drips. Cook until fork tender, about 20 min.

Meanwhile, rinse the rucola thoroughly in water, dry, and split between two plates. Then prepare the dressing by placing all ingredients in a small bowl and mixing with a wire whisk, or put them in a glass jar or another container with a lid and shake like crazy until everything is mixed together.

Once beets are cooked, remove from oven and take away the thin outer peel. Slice in to 1/2 inch thick slices and fan them out across the rucola, 2 beets per plate.

Slice the 1/2 log of goat cheese into 6 even slices and place in the hot oven for 5 minutes or until softened around the edges but still slightly white and solid in the center. Arrange 3 slices of goat cheese around the beets on each plate. Drizzle the dressing over each salad and serve immediately.

25 February 2009