Baby Beets an Early Summer Treat
Baby Beets and Greens Salad is like a little celebration for your taste buds with the return of in season vegetables. A simple and robust salad that can also be served as a cold side dish and uses both the beet roots and the beet greens. Choose baby beets that have healthy looking vibrant green tops, best made while the greens are young and tender in late spring to early summer. Check your local farmers’ market to find fresh in season vegetables.
How to Use Your Beet Greens
Raw beet greens have a very strong earthy flavour. You can tear them up and mix them into a salad with other greens or you can blanch or sautee them to use in soups or stir fry. Trim the red stems about half way down from the leaves. You will have to wash them thoroughly because the leaves and stems like to collect dirt. Fill your sink or a large bowl with cool water. Submerge the greens into the water. Swish them around then let all the dirt fall to the bottom of the bowl or sink. Take the greens out and let them drain in a colander.Empty the water and repeat the process at least two more times. After the water does not look dirty when you take the greens out you are good to give them one more rinse with running water. Let them drain while you prepare the water for blanching.
Blanching is a fairly quick process, bring a large pot of water to the boil, dunk your beet greens for 1-3 minutes depending on how soft you like the leaves. Take them out and dunk them into a bowl of cold water to stop the cooking process. Drain in the colander again and let them cool. Voila, your greens are ready to use in this salad or can be stored for using later in other recipes.
- 1 bunch baby beets
- 1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 tablespoon balsamic glaze
- 2 tablespoons roasted, shelled sunflower seeds
- Sea salt to taste
- Trim leaves about half way down the stems and set aside for washing.
- Trim remaining stem off the beets and trim the root end as well.
- Wash beet greens by rinsing several times in cool water till no dirt is left in the water after draining.
- Blanch beet greens in a pot of boiling water for 1-3 minutes depending on how tender the leaves are.
- Remove from boiling water and submerge in cold water to stop cooking process then allow to drain in a colander.
- Add the beets to the boiling water and cook 10-15 minutes till beets are fork tender, you will be able to pierce the beets with a fork.
- Drain and peel beets, removing the tough skin either with a paring knife or by rubbing the skin off with your hands under running water.
- Slice cooked beets into small rounds and set aside to cool.
- On a large plate or platter place cooked beet greens as the first layer of the salad.
- Top beet greens with sliced cooled beets.
- Crumble feta cheese on top of beets and greens
- Sprinkle with sunflower seeds
- Drizzle with olive oil and balsamic glaze
- Top with fresh ground sea salt.
- You can substitute feta cheese for goat cheese if you like. Also you can change up the dressing to anything you may enjoy like, italian dressing or greek dressing.