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Monday, August 1, 2011

Beet and Snap Pea Salad

I've never been a HUGE salad person. Even though I generally like to eat colder food (like, chili to me tastes best the morning after, still cold, like pizza), a completely COLD salad does not tempt me. Lately, however, I've been trying to expand my horizons. My work has an awesome salad bar that always stocks some of my favorite salad fixin's: chickpeas, black olives, spinach, and of course, PICKLED BEETS! I love pickled almost anything, but pickled beets might be one of my favorite foods ever. I seriously put almost an entire jar of those bad boys on my salad and savor every last one. So delicious.

Well, I didn't make pickled beets, if you're wondering. Not yet at least.

But I DID make a beet salad with the hopes that continuing my obsession with beets into the roasted area might be a good idea. After my weekly trip to the farmer's market (Saturday mornings=my idea of heaven. Trip to the farmer's market, trip to the bakery...bliss), I had managed to pick up BOTH of the star ingredients to this salad.

I found this recipe for "Golden Beet and Snap Pea Salad" from the "Clean Food" cookbook that Maris gave me for my bridal shower. It looked simple enough, except that I had to ROAST BEETS...which seemed terrifying.

I had a few snafus doing this one, which I'm pretty sure made the final outcome less tasty than what it should have been.
-I used regular beets, not golden ones (you know, the red ones that stain your life for 2 weeks after you work with them)
-I was feeling rushed, so I didn't boil the beets long enough, so they ended up being way hard.
-Matt was supposed to do the blanching of the snap comment.
-Didn't have fresh dill, so used dried dill. Didn't exactly know how much to use and am pretty sure we didn't put enough in.
-Frisee was called for. No idea what that is. Leafy greens I think? Didn't do that.

*Sorry for the poor quality picture. I'm not a photographer, but I'm still pretty sure that beets are about as unphotogenic as I am.

All in all, we ate this as a main course and it is definitely a side dish. Matt loved it, I felt like I was beet up (get it?) afterwards. I never thought a person could eat too many beets, but you can, and I did.

Here's the recipe from "Clean Food" by Terry Walters

Golden Beet and Snap Pea Salad


4-5 golden beets
2 cups snap peas
2 cups frisee


1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons chopped fresh dill
1 tablespoon maple syrup (we substituted brown sugar, for obvious reasons)
Juice of 1 lemon
Coarse sea salt and freshly ground black pepper


Place whole beets in large pot of boiling water and cook until tender throughout when pierced with knife (about 20 minutes). Drain water and set aside until cool enough to handle. Holding beets under cold water, gently push away outer skins. Cut away root ends and any blemishes, slice into wedges and set aside.

To prepare snap peas, pinch stems and pull down to remove ends and strings. Place in mixing bowl and blanch with boiling water for 30 seconds. Drain and rinse with cold water. Return to mixing bowl, combine with beets and set aside.

In small bowl, whisk together all dressing ingredients, pour over beets and peas and toss to combine.

Arrange beets and peas on bed of frisee and serve.

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