Baked multi-coloured beet­roots with fresh curd cheese

The Daily Telegraph - Telegraph Magazine - - The Cut / Food -

Serves 4

— 1kg new-sea­son small beet­root – buy a com­bi­na­tion of red, golden and candy beet­root, if pos­si­ble

— 1 tbsp bal­samic vine­gar

— 2 tbsp olive oil

— 1 red chicory, cut length­ways

into thin strips

— 4 large medium-hot red chill­ies, or to taste, de­seeded and chopped

— 4 tbsp ex­tra-vir­gin olive oil,

plus more for driz­zling

— 4 tbsp fresh goat’s curd or

other soft fresh cheese

To serve

— 2 tbsp pine nuts, toasted in

a dry pan un­til light golden — beet­root leaves or other red

salad leaves

— crusty bread

Pre­heat the oven to 180C/gas mark 4.

Trim the leaves off the beet­root, sav­ing any perky ones for the salad. Wash, then put all but two into a roast­ing pan, leav­ing them whole with the roots trimmed short.

Add the vine­gar and oil to the pan, then toss. Cover with foil and bake for 35 min­utes. Re­move the foil and cook for an­other 10 min­utes, or un­til ten­der when pierced with a knife.

Al­low to cool, then scrape off the skins and trim the root and stalk ends. Cut into quar­ters then ar­range in a serv­ing dish with the red-chicory strips.

Peel and finely grate the re­main­ing two beet­roots. Put in a bowl with the chilli and ex­tra-vir­gin olive oil, and sea­son with salt and pep­per. Mix well then drop spoon­fuls in among the roasted beet­root. Add blobs of the goat’s curd, driz­zle over a lit­tle more ex­tra-vir­gin olive oil, then throw over the pine nuts with the beet­root leaves or other red leaves. Serve with bread, for mop­ping up.

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