We’re in the dog-days of summer here, and it’s hot and humid; this means it is salad weather for the foreseeable future. This recipe for Orange Braised Beet Salad with Goat Cheese and Walnuts is cool and colorful and packed with nutrition. Along with the named ingredients, it contains fresh salad greens, orange supremes, red onion, blueberries, fresh thyme leaves, and a champagne vinaigrette made with the beet/orange braising liquid.
Fortunately, given the weather, beets don’t require a lot of cooking. I braised these beets first in a dry skillet and then with orange juice added. The total cooking time was fifteen minutes. This left the beets softened, but with a bit of “tooth” left. And, it left most of the healthful elements in the beet intact.
After the braising and while the beets were cooling, I used the reserved beet/orange juice liquid and turned it into a champagne vinaigrette for the salad. Beet/orange juice, champagne vinegar, orange zest, salt, pepper and a bit of olive oil were the ingredients I used; it was delicious and a gorgeous color.
The salad is composed of salad greens, red onion slices, blueberries, orange supremes (this is just orange segments – “supreme” is the segment with the membrane removed), fresh thyme leaves, goat cheese, toasted walnuts, and the vinaigrette.
Since the cooking time is only 15 minutes, total, the heating-up-the-house-by-cooking factor is very low. The you-will-stain-your-clothes-so-you-better-wear-an-eatin’-shirt factor is high. I guess we can’t have everything. *wink*
Do, try this salad!
- 2 cups cubed ( ½" ) washed and peeled beets (about 3 small beets)
- 1 cup orange juice
- 4 cups mixed salad greens
- 2 oranges, one zested, both with segments supremed (about 1 cup segments - about 1 tablespoon zest)
- 1 cup blueberries, washed and patted dry
- 1 cup toasted walnut pieces
- ½ cup thinly sliced red onion
- 3 ounces crumbled goat cheese
- 2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves
- FOR THE VINAIGRETTE:
- ⅓ cup beet/orange juice liquid
- ⅓ cup champagne vinegar
- ⅓ cup olive oil
- 1 tablespoon of reserved orange zest
- pinch each of salt and ground black pepper
- Place a medium-sized skillet (with a lid) on medium heat to get hot.
- Once the skillet is hot, add the beet cubes and allow to sear for 2 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- After two minutes, add the orange juice, reduce heat to medium-low, cover and cook for 13 minutes.
- Remove from heat.
- Using a slotted spoon, remove the beets to a bowl to cool.
- FOR THE VINAIGRETTE:
- Reserve ⅓ cup of the beet/orange juice for the vinaigrette, allow to cool.
- Once the beet/orange juice is cool, add the champagne vinegar and orange zest.
- Using a whisk, slowly drizzle in the olive oil.
- Add the salt and pepper, adjusting to your taste.
- SALAD ASSEMBLY:
- Place the salad greens on a large platter (or divide in individual bowls), add the cooled beets, orange segments, blueberries, walnuts, red onion, goat cheese, thyme leaves and dressing to taste.