Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Luscious Beet Salad with Toasted Pumpkin Seeds

I planted beets in my garden recently, and I just couldn't wait for them to come up. I bought some at the store in the meantime and tried this recipe. It was SOOOO good! I like that you use the whole beet, and it's super healthy.
4 large beets
1/4 c pumpkin seeds, toasted (you could also use, almonds, walnuts or pecans)
2 scallions
1/4 c goat cheese (you could also use feta or blue cheese)

3 T extra virgin olive oil
2 T balsamic vinegar
3/4 t Dijon mustard
1/4 t ground pepper
1 T finely chopped fresh basil

Wash beets and remove tops. Place beets in large pot filled with water and bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer until beets are tender (about an hour). Set aside to cool.
*tip: you can also microwave or oven cook your beets. Whichever method you prefer.
Toast pumpkin seeds by placing seed in a dry skillet over medium heat. Move the skillet back and forth over the heat, and stir the seed with your other hand. This will toast the seeds evenly and prevent burning. When seeds begin to pop and give off a nutty aroma, they are done. Set aside.
To prepare beet greens, cut bstems off of leaves and discard. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Cut the beet greens into bit size pieces, then submerge in water to wash. (I use my salad spinner). Shake off excess water and drop greens into boiling water. Cook for only about 30 seconds, just enough to make the stems tender. Place greens in a colander and run cold water over them to halt cooking. Toss salad ingredients with dressing ingredients, then serve warm or at room temperature.

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