Beets and pear salad makes an im­pres­sion

Calgary Herald - Calgary Herald New Condos - - Weekend Life - KAREN BARN­ABY

Beet and Pear Salad with Vanilla Bean Vinai­grette

You can use ap­ples, grape­fruit or orange seg­ments, or pomegranat­e ar­ils in place of the pears. The vinai­grette is de­li­cious and can be used on other sal­ads. 1 lb (454 g) medium golden beets, with­out greens, scrubbed 1 lb (454 g) medium pur­ple beets, with­out greens, scrubbed 2 tbsp (30 mL) ap­ple cider vine­gar 2 tbsp (30 mL) fresh orange juice 1/2 vanilla bean, split length­wise 1/2 tbsp (7.5 mL) mild honey 1/2 cup (125 mL) ex­tra-vir­gin olive oil 1 tbsp (15 mL) fresh le­mon juice Sea salt and freshly ground black pep­per 8 cups (2 L) mod­er­ately packed mixed greens 1 ripe pear, halved, cored and cut length­wise into 1/4-inch (6 mm) wedges 2 oz (58 g) soft, un­ripened goat’s cheese or goat feta 1/4 cup (60 mL) coarsely chopped shelled pis­ta­chios

Po­si­tion rack in the cen­tre of the oven and heat the oven to 350 F (175 C).

Place the beets in a small bak­ing dish. Add 1/4 cup (60 mL) wa­ter and cover tightly with foil. Roast the beets un­til they are ten­der when pierced with a small sharp knife, about 1 to 1¼ hours. You can bake the beets while you are bak­ing some­thing else in the oven.

Com­bine the vine­gar and orange juice in a very small, heavy pot. Scrape the vanilla seeds from the pod into the pan and drop in the pod. Bring the mix­ture to a sim­mer over low heat, and con­tinue sim­mer­ing for 2 min­utes. Trans­fer the mix­ture to a small bowl and let cool com­pletely.

Once cool, re­move the vanilla bean. Whisk in the honey, then slowly add the oil in a steady stream, whisk­ing un­til com­bined. Whisk in the le­mon juice, salt and pep­per to taste.

Peel the beets when they are cool enough to han­dle, but still warm. Cut into 1/2-inch (1.25-cm)-thick wedges. Toss them with enough of the vinai­grette to lightly coat. The beets may be cov­ered at this point and re­frig­er­ated for up to 24 hours.

In a large bowl, toss the let­tuce with enough of the vinai­grette to lightly coat it and ar­range on a serv­ing plat­ter or in­di­vid­ual plates. Top with beets, pears, cheese and nuts. Driz­zle with the re­main­ing vinai­grette and serve im­me­di­ately.

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