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Monday, 22 August 2016

GOAT CHEESE Salad with BEETS and Maple-candied Walnuts

Apparently, tons of people have made this salad before since there are sooo many recipes (and reviews) for it out there. Now it was my turn to make it and after doing so, I can understand why. I've had it so many times in the past week.

The combined flavours of the earthy beets and the intense goat cheese with the crunch of the candied walnuts complimented each other so well, it was enough to drive your taste buds wild. I even burnt the walnuts by accident and it still turned out great!

What a blending of flavours! In fact, after making this salad a couple of times, I eventually ditched the dressing (but I'll still include it in the recipe of course), because I honestly didn't think the salad needed it.

I originally wanted to use up some old goat cheese I had laying around in my fridge taking up space when I discovered this Beet Salad with Goat Cheese recipe - so I had to go out and buy me some beets!

I don't think I've ever bought raw beets in my life. Just those kinds you can buy in a jar, you know, already prepared. I wanted to do it from scratch and what a mess! There was red everywhere! But I'd do it again.

I didn't even know if I was suppose to peel off the skin after boiling it - it didn't say so in the recipe but did it matter? Hell no! I ate the skin and all!

Salad WITHOUT the dressing...

Now go try it for yourself and let me know!

(As usual, my alterations are in red!)


Beet Salad with Goat Cheese

  • medium BEETS - scrubbed, trimmed and cut in half*
  • 1/3 cup chopped WALNUTS**
  • 3 tbsp MAPLE SYRUP***
  • 1 (10-ounce) package mixed baby SALAD GREENS
  • 1/2 cup frozen ORANGE JUICE CONCENTRATE****
  • 1/4 cup balsamic VINEGAR*****
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin OLIVE OIL
  • 2 ounces GOAT CHEESE

* - I used 3 beets so use as much or as little as you want. 
** - Some people, I've read, used pecans instead.
*** - I used honey at first and it still turned out great. Some have even used brown sugar!
**** - I didn't have any frozen orange juice CONCENTRATE so I ended up just using regular orange juice.
***** - I didn't have balsamic vinegar on hand so I had to make my own. (Use 1 tbsp cider or red wine vinegar plus 1/2 tsp sugar to substitute for 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar. So you would need 4 tbsp as per this recipe.)

  1. Place beets into a saucepan, and fill with enough water to cover. Bring to a boil, then cook for 20 to 30 minutes, until tender. Drain and cool, then cut in to cubes. *
  2. While the beets are cooking, place the walnuts in a skillet over medium-low heat. Heat until warm and starting to toast, then stir in the maple syrup. Cook and stir until evenly coated, then remove from the heat and set aside to cool.
  3. In a small bowl, whisk together the orange juice concentrate, balsamic vinegar and olive oil to make the dressing. **
  4. Place a large helping of baby greens onto each of four salad plates, divide candied walnuts equally and sprinkle over the greens. Place equal amounts of beets over the greens, and top with dabs of goat cheese. Drizzle each plate with some of the dressing.
* - I cut up my beets into slices, chunks... whatever. Also, a lot of reviewers mentioned roasting the beets with a bit of olive oil (and some salt) in foil for about an hour or so in the oven @ 400 F.)
** - Some people just use balsamic vinaigrette dressing instead which sometimes have additional ingredients such as oils, herbs, and sugars, but it will still have the same basic taste.)

Yum! That was delicious!!

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