Looks Purple But It Tastes Orange: Beet & Orange Salad

by Jeff Berkowitz on May 20, 2010 · 1 comment

in beets,Vegetables

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Beets are sweet and delicious! They can be served hot or cold and make a great summertime salad. The traditional beet salad has beets and red onions with a vinegar based sauce. That is very good, but with a few adjustments we can make it great! This is one of those salads that is better the second day which is perfect for our BBQ; we can make some things ahead and save a few items for last minute. Let’s start with the beets; I always buy beets with the tops on. The tops are delicious sauteéd, kind of like spinach and they are a perfect indicator of how fresh the beets are. Fresh, crisp looking beet tops equals fresh beets, you can’t fake that. Another good thing to look for is a bunch of beets that contains roughly the same sized beets. If the beets are different sizes the small ones will be over-cooked before the large ones are even done.

Cooking beets is very simple; cut off the tops, cover with cold water by about 1½ inches, bring to a boil over high heat, reduce to a low boil and boil for about 30 minutes. The cooking times will vary with the size of the beets, they are done when a knife inserted pulls out easily. When the beets are cooked, allow them to cool in their water or change the water to cool them faster. Once they are cool remove the skin by simply rubbing the skin off. The beets are now ready to use as you wish.
This time I paired the beets with orange slices and made the dressing with raspberry vinegar and the zest of the orange. This salad can be served as soon as it is combined but a day in the refrigerator helps to intensify the flavors. It adds a tremendous color to the table but you may want to serve it on separate plates so the red color does not turn the potato salad red…Enjoy!
  • 1  bunch of beets, cooked and then peeled as explained above
  • 1 medium red onion
  • 2 navel oranges
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • juice from ½ of one of the navel oranges
  • zest from one of the navel oranges
  • 1 Tbsp raspberry vinegar
  • 3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil

Using a food processor, slice the beets with a 4mm blade and the onions with a 2mm blade. Peel 1½ oranges and make thin slices that are cross-sections parallel to the equator of the orange (turn the orange on its side and slice it). Combine the liquid ingredients with the salt and sugar stirring until they are dissolved. Add the sliced beets, the sliced onions and the sliced oranges to the liquid ingredients and mix thoroughly. You can serve right away, but I recommend letting the flavors develop for a day in the refrigerator.

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{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

1 sippitysup May 24, 2010 at 10:36 am

This is a beautiful salad with classic flavors. There is something about the earthy minerality of beets that lends itself so well to bright sweet acidy tastes. GREG


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