Nothing says summer like bright colors, backyard barbecues and farm fresh veggies. And even though the official first day of summer is still a few weeks away, I couldn’t help but get a head start on the festivities.
Last week’s link party yielded some incredible beet recipes (check out all the links written in the comments). There were so many wonderful ideas, it was hard to decide where to start. Luckily, I have quite a bit of beets in my fridge, so I can enjoy a bunch of different beet dishes :)
This is a recipe I have been dying to try. Our friends and neighbors made this dish during the holidays and I have been dreaming about it ever since. Believe it or not, with all the beets I get in my CSA box, I have never taken a stab at roasting them. But now that I have reaped the benefits, I plan on preparing my beets this way more often. They are so sweet and delicious!
2 pounds of medium sized beets, greens removed and scrubbed
1/2 cup roughly chopped walnuts
1/2 cup crumbled gorgonzola cheese
4 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1. Adjust oven rack to the middle position and heat the oven to 400 degrees. Wrap the beets individually in foil and place them on a rimmed baking sheet. Roast until a skewer can be inserted easily into a beet, 45 minutes to 1 hour. If the beets are different sizes, remove the smaller ones from the oven as they become tender.
2. While the beets are in the oven, toast walnuts in a dry skillet over medium heat until fragrant, about 5 minutes.
3. Remove beets from the oven, open the foil packets, and allow to cool for 10 minutes. Rub off the skins using paper towels. Slice the beets 1/4 inch thick.
4. Add beets to a large bowl and toss with vinegar, cheese and toasted nuts. Serve hot, at room temperature, or chilled.
Recipe slightly adapted from The America’s Test Kitchen Family Cookbook
The roasted beets, cheese and nuts are a great combination. The bitterness of the walnuts and sharpness of the cheese is a nice balance to the sweetness of the beets. As yummy as this dish was on its own, this trio would also work well atop a bed of fresh garden greens.
We served the beets alongside a spread of grilled chicken, marinated flank steak, grilled veggies and mashed potatoes. It was a true feast! But then again, isn’t that what summer cookouts are all about?
Your turn: What are some of the dishes you are looking forward to making (and eating) this summer? I look forward to reading your responses :)