beet salad

Beet and Brussels Sprouts Salad

Now that my children are grown, with children of their own, I sometimes think about the “old days” and remember the good times, the festive occasions, the fun we had. The Jewish holidays rank high on my list of best memories, especially the Passover Seders. Whether I’m thinking about the times that my cousin and I would crawl under the table while my uncle recited the Haggadah or last year, when my grandchildren threw the styrofoam “hail” and plastic locusts as we mentioned the Ten Plagues, the memories are good, the kind that I love to deposit in my memory bank.

There are good food memories too, from my grandma’s famous chicken soup to the complaints I got when I first served haroset made with dried apricots, pistachio nuts and cayenne pepper.

My first Seder continues my family's generations long menu featuring matzo ball soup, followed by roasted turkey. Chremslich, of course. In fact, a double portion of that. 

But all the rest is different. Over the years there was one food change after another, little by little as new in-laws came into our family, tastes changed and allergies had to be considered. So these days we have our own family expected recipes -- matzo ball soup and turkey, plus homemade baked cranberries, spinach pie (made with a matzo crust), imam bayeldi, and lots of other vegetables and the now standard spicy dried fruit haroset.

I used to serve flourless chocolate cake, but we had that a little too often, so because Passover is also my grandson's birthday, I will serve homemade macaroons along with a traditional chocolate roll, the one I used to make when my daughter Meredith's birthday fell during Passover. (You can stuff the roll with whipped cream, jelly or parve lemon curd filling).

Every year I add one new dish to my first Seder. One year it was Ratatouille. A few times there was a new version of haroset. I even made matzo farfel chocolates one year.

This year? A new salad! Here it is:

Roasted Beet and Brussels Sprouts Salad

  • 4 medium beets
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • salt to taste
  • 1/2 pound (about 30) medium size Brussels sprouts
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar (or use Balsamic vinegar)
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons grated fresh orange peel
  • freshly ground black pepper

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Peel the beets and cut them into bite size pieces. Place the beets on a baking sheet and pour one tablespoon olive oil over them. Toss to coat the beets. Sprinkle with salt. Roast for about 20 minutes or until tender. Trim the Brussels sprouts (cut them in half if they are large). Place them on a baking sheet and pour one tablespoon olive oil over them. Toss to coat the sprouts. Sprinkle with salt. Roast for about 15 minutes or until tender. Place the vegetables together in a bowl. Mix the remaining olive oil, apple cider vinegar, lemon juice and orange peel and pour over the ingredients. Let rest for about 10 minutes, place in a serving bowl and sprinkle with salt and black pepper to taste.

Makes 6-8 servings

 

 

Roasted Beet and Winter Squash Salad

My friend and fellow blogger Liz Reuven ( www.kosherlikeme.com ) is going to have an especially festive Thanksgiving this year. Her son married his college sweetheart last August, so there’s a very welcome new family member at the table.  Liz’s new daughter-in-law is health-conscious. So is Liz, whose blog focuses on good restaurants where people who are kosher or vegetarian can find delicious things to eat. Both women bond as they spend time together finding those places.  Recently Liz asked me if I could come up with a salad for their Thanksgiving meal. Something that was healthy, seasonal, easy-to-make and nutritious and that also had eye appeal.  She wants to wow her new daughter-in-law.  I turned to the brightest, late-fall veggies that are available at farmer’s markets and also every supermarket: beets and winter squash. The rich red and orange are a stunning contrast of color and roasting these already sweet vegetables makes them even sweeter and more rich tasting and delicious.  I decided to mix in some watercress (you could use arugula) as a bitter contrast to the veggies, and included chopped nuts (I used hazelnuts) to add a crunchy texture.  Here’s the recipe:   Roasted Beet and Winter Squash Salad   2 large beets  1 small butternut squash  3 tablespoons olive oil  salt to taste  1/3 cup chopped hazelnuts  1 small bunch watercress  3 tablespoons white wine vinegar  1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary  freshly ground black pepper    Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Trim the beets, cutting away the greens, if any, and discarding any hard, fibrous parts of the stem. Wash and drain the greens and use them for other purposes. Scrub the beets, wrap them in aluminum foil and roast for 50-60 minutes or until they are tender. Peel the beets when they are cool enough to handle. Cut the beets into bite size pieces and place in a bowl. About halfway through the beet roasting, cut the squash in half, scoop the seeds and peel the halves. Cut the halves into chunks. Rub the chunks with a film of olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and place on a baking sheet. Place the squash into the oven (with the beets). Cook the squash for 25-30 minutes or until tender. Remove the squash chunks and let cool. Add them to the beets. Place the hazelnuts on a small baking sheet, place them in the oven and cook for about 10 minutes or until lightly toasted, remove from the oven and set aside. Wash and dry the watercress. Remove the stems and chop the leaves coarsely. Add to the bowl and toss the ingredients gently. Mix the remaining olive oil, white wine vinegar and rosemary and pour over the ingredients. Let rest for about 10 minutes, place in a serving bowl and sprinkle with salt and black pepper to taste. Scatter the nuts on top.   Makes 6 servings

My friend and fellow blogger Liz Reuven (www.kosherlikeme.com) is going to have an especially festive Thanksgiving this year. Her son married his college sweetheart last August, so there’s a very welcome new family member at the table.

Liz’s new daughter-in-law is health-conscious. So is Liz, whose blog focuses on good restaurants where people who are kosher or vegetarian can find delicious things to eat. Both women bond as they spend time together finding those places.

Recently Liz asked me if I could come up with a salad for their Thanksgiving meal. Something that was healthy, seasonal, easy-to-make and nutritious and that also had eye appeal.

She wants to wow her new daughter-in-law.

I turned to the brightest, late-fall veggies that are available at farmer’s markets and also every supermarket: beets and winter squash. The rich red and orange are a stunning contrast of color and roasting these already sweet vegetables makes them even sweeter and more rich tasting and delicious.

I decided to mix in some watercress (you could use arugula) as a bitter contrast to the veggies, and included chopped nuts (I used hazelnuts) to add a crunchy texture.

Here’s the recipe:

Roasted Beet and Winter Squash Salad

2 large beets

1 small butternut squash

3 tablespoons olive oil

salt to taste

1/3 cup chopped hazelnuts

1 small bunch watercress

3 tablespoons white wine vinegar

1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary

freshly ground black pepper

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Trim the beets, cutting away the greens, if any, and discarding any hard, fibrous parts of the stem. Wash and drain the greens and use them for other purposes. Scrub the beets, wrap them in aluminum foil and roast for 50-60 minutes or until they are tender. Peel the beets when they are cool enough to handle. Cut the beets into bite size pieces and place in a bowl. About halfway through the beet roasting, cut the squash in half, scoop the seeds and peel the halves. Cut the halves into chunks. Rub the chunks with a film of olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and place on a baking sheet. Place the squash into the oven (with the beets). Cook the squash for 25-30 minutes or until tender. Remove the squash chunks and let cool. Add them to the beets. Place the hazelnuts on a small baking sheet, place them in the oven and cook for about 10 minutes or until lightly toasted, remove from the oven and set aside. Wash and dry the watercress. Remove the stems and chop the leaves coarsely. Add to the bowl and toss the ingredients gently. Mix the remaining olive oil, white wine vinegar and rosemary and pour over the ingredients. Let rest for about 10 minutes, place in a serving bowl and sprinkle with salt and black pepper to taste. Scatter the nuts on top.

Makes 6 servings

Beet Salad with Moroccan Spices

My grand daughter Lila, age 6, asked what Labor Day was for. 
 Because for her it means she doesn’t officially start first grade until the day after. But there aren’t any decorations or presents, no pumpkins, trees, glitter, hearts or chocolate. So what’s the deal? 
 I explained to her that it is meant to celebrate America’s workers. The people who work every day as mechanics and auto workers, salespeople, firefighters, teachers, police and restaurant cooks and servers and so on and so on. Sometimes communities have parades and fireworks. 
 But there are no special ornaments, no greeting cards and also no particular food. 
 On the other hand, people do celebrate Labor Day in some sort of way. The entire weekend has become a sort of end-of-summer before-we-have-to-get-serious one. So there’s picnics and baseball games and maybe the last swim of the season. 
 At my place, the kids and grandkids come. We’ll have a homemade challah. And  pie . Some  Grand Finale Cookies . Lots of grilled stuff and a heap of summer tomatoes, corn and salad. 
 And Beet Salad. Because everyone in the family loves it. This is my latest version. 

 Beet Salad with Moroccan Spices 

 3 large beets 
 1/4 cup chopped red onion 
 3 tablespoons chopped parsley 
 2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint 
 2 tablespoons olive oil 
 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar 
 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard 
 3/4 teaspoon ground cumin 
 1/4 teaspoon ground coriander 

 Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Trim the beets (use the greens separately). Scrub the beets and wrap them tightly in aluminum foil. Roast until tender, about 55-75 minutes, depending on size. Unwrap the beets and when they are cool enough to handle, peel them. Cut the beets into bite size pieces. Place the beet chunks in a bowl. Add the onion, parsley and mint. In a small bowl, mix the olive oil, wine vinegar, mustard, cumin and coriander. Pour over the beet mixture and toss ingredients. Let rest for 15 minutes before servings. Serve at room temperature. Makes 4-6 servings

My grand daughter Lila, age 6, asked what Labor Day was for.

Because for her it means she doesn’t officially start first grade until the day after. But there aren’t any decorations or presents, no pumpkins, trees, glitter, hearts or chocolate. So what’s the deal?

I explained to her that it is meant to celebrate America’s workers. The people who work every day as mechanics and auto workers, salespeople, firefighters, teachers, police and restaurant cooks and servers and so on and so on. Sometimes communities have parades and fireworks.

But there are no special ornaments, no greeting cards and also no particular food.

On the other hand, people do celebrate Labor Day in some sort of way. The entire weekend has become a sort of end-of-summer before-we-have-to-get-serious one. So there’s picnics and baseball games and maybe the last swim of the season.

At my place, the kids and grandkids come. We’ll have a homemade challah. And pie. Some Grand Finale Cookies. Lots of grilled stuff and a heap of summer tomatoes, corn and salad.

And Beet Salad. Because everyone in the family loves it. This is my latest version.

Beet Salad with Moroccan Spices

3 large beets

1/4 cup chopped red onion

3 tablespoons chopped parsley

2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 tablespoons white wine vinegar

1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard

3/4 teaspoon ground cumin

1/4 teaspoon ground coriander

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Trim the beets (use the greens separately). Scrub the beets and wrap them tightly in aluminum foil. Roast until tender, about 55-75 minutes, depending on size. Unwrap the beets and when they are cool enough to handle, peel them. Cut the beets into bite size pieces. Place the beet chunks in a bowl. Add the onion, parsley and mint. In a small bowl, mix the olive oil, wine vinegar, mustard, cumin and coriander. Pour over the beet mixture and toss ingredients. Let rest for 15 minutes before servings. Serve at room temperature. Makes 4-6 servings

Beet Salad with Orange, Mint and Lime

I sure do roast a lot of beets. That’s really something coming from a woman who grew up on DelMonte canned vegetables (and even after my Mom switched to frozen, she still used beets from the can).  Actually, good canned beets are fine in a pinch. One of those keep-it-on-hand-just-in-case items, like frozen peas and peanut butter.  But roasted fresh beets are better. Roasting brings out the natural sugars, making this already sweet vegetable even sweeter. Besides, when you buy fresh beets you also get the greens, which I cook separately (stir-fried in olive oil with salt and raisins).  Last week I mentioned that may family loves  beet salad  and that I would be making  this recipe  for our Father’s Day get-together. And I did indeed make a beet salad, but I made this version rather than that one because the mint that I planted a few weeks ago finally is thriving and I wanted to use some.  It got great reviews.   Beet Salad with Orange, Mint and Lime   3 large beets  2 tablespoons vegetable oil  2 tablespoons lime juice  1 tablespoon white wine vinegar  1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh mint  2 teaspoons grated fresh orange peel  salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste     Trim the beets, cutting away the greens, if any, and discarding any hard, fibrous parts of the stem. Wash and drain the greens and use them for other purposes. Scrub the beets, wrap them in aluminum foil and roast for 50-60 minutes or until they are tender. Peel the beets when they are cool enough to handle. Cut the beets into bite size pieces and place in a bowl. Add the vegetable oil, lime juice, wine vinegar, mint and orange peel and toss to distribute the ingredients evenly. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Let rest for 10-15 minutes before serving.  Makes 4-6 servings

I sure do roast a lot of beets. That’s really something coming from a woman who grew up on DelMonte canned vegetables (and even after my Mom switched to frozen, she still used beets from the can).

Actually, good canned beets are fine in a pinch. One of those keep-it-on-hand-just-in-case items, like frozen peas and peanut butter.

But roasted fresh beets are better. Roasting brings out the natural sugars, making this already sweet vegetable even sweeter. Besides, when you buy fresh beets you also get the greens, which I cook separately (stir-fried in olive oil with salt and raisins).

Last week I mentioned that may family loves beet salad and that I would be making this recipe for our Father’s Day get-together. And I did indeed make a beet salad, but I made this version rather than that one because the mint that I planted a few weeks ago finally is thriving and I wanted to use some.

It got great reviews.

Beet Salad with Orange, Mint and Lime

3 large beets

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

2 tablespoons lime juice

1 tablespoon white wine vinegar

1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh mint

2 teaspoons grated fresh orange peel

salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

 

Trim the beets, cutting away the greens, if any, and discarding any hard, fibrous parts of the stem. Wash and drain the greens and use them for other purposes. Scrub the beets, wrap them in aluminum foil and roast for 50-60 minutes or until they are tender. Peel the beets when they are cool enough to handle. Cut the beets into bite size pieces and place in a bowl. Add the vegetable oil, lime juice, wine vinegar, mint and orange peel and toss to distribute the ingredients evenly. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Let rest for 10-15 minutes before serving.

Makes 4-6 servings

Beet Salad with Peas

When everyone in a family likes the same thing to eat, you make that something right?  
  Our family is no different than everyone else’s. Some eat meat, some don’t. A few hate turkey or have had enough of it (turkey is one of my go-to meals). Ditto chicken. One person is carb-free, another one doesn’t like green vegetables, this one is allergic to nuts, that one can’t digest lettuce.  
  Got it?  
  That’s why I am making beet salad on Father’s Day. It’s a family favorite. So everyone will pick and choose from the other stuff but all will eat some of this. I make all sorts of versions of beet salad, depending on what else I am serving. This one has peas, added for variety.  
     
 Beet Salad with Peas 
  1 bunch medium beets  
  2 scallions, chopped  
  1 cup thawed frozen peas (or blanched fresh peas)  
  2 tablespoons olive oil  
  2 tablespoons white wine vinegar  
  salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste  
  Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Trim the beets, cutting away the greens, if any, and discarding any hard, fibrous parts of the stem. Wash and drain the greens and use them for other purposes. Scrub the beets, wrap them in aluminum foil and roast for 50-60 minutes or until they are tender. Peel the beets when they are cool enough to handle. Cut the beets into bite size pieces and place in a bowl. Add the scallions and peas and toss the ingredients. Pour in the olive oil and wine vinegar and season to taste with salt and pepper. Let rest for 10-15 minutes before serving. Makes 4-6 servings  
   

When everyone in a family likes the same thing to eat, you make that something right?

Our family is no different than everyone else’s. Some eat meat, some don’t. A few hate turkey or have had enough of it (turkey is one of my go-to meals). Ditto chicken. One person is carb-free, another one doesn’t like green vegetables, this one is allergic to nuts, that one can’t digest lettuce.

Got it?

That’s why I am making beet salad on Father’s Day. It’s a family favorite. So everyone will pick and choose from the other stuff but all will eat some of this. I make all sorts of versions of beet salad, depending on what else I am serving. This one has peas, added for variety.


Beet Salad with Peas

1 bunch medium beets

2 scallions, chopped

1 cup thawed frozen peas (or blanched fresh peas)

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 tablespoons white wine vinegar

salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Trim the beets, cutting away the greens, if any, and discarding any hard, fibrous parts of the stem. Wash and drain the greens and use them for other purposes. Scrub the beets, wrap them in aluminum foil and roast for 50-60 minutes or until they are tender. Peel the beets when they are cool enough to handle. Cut the beets into bite size pieces and place in a bowl. Add the scallions and peas and toss the ingredients. Pour in the olive oil and wine vinegar and season to taste with salt and pepper. Let rest for 10-15 minutes before serving. Makes 4-6 servings