I made this for my mom and we loved it! I will definitely make it again.
Orange Salad with Beets and Fennel
The different colors and textures make this a lovely first course. It's better to layer than toss this salad so the beets won't stain the other ingredients. Prep: 20 minutes, Bake: 40 minutes.
Yield: Makes 6 to 8 servings
- 6 small fresh beets, washed and trimmed of greens (red, golden, or any other variety, or a mixture)
- 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar, divided
- 1/4 cup fresh orange juice (about 1 orange)
- 1/4 cup water
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- Salt, to taste
- Freshly ground pepper, to taste
- 1 head Belgian endive, trimmed, cored, washed, and drained
- 1 small head radicchio, trimmed, cored, washed, and drained
- 2 navel oranges, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch sections
- 1 fennel bulb, cored and thinly sliced
- 1 small onion, thinly sliced (about 1/2 cup)
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- Garnishes: 2 tablespoons each chopped fresh chives, fennel fronds, and mint
- 1. Preheat oven to 400º. Place beets on a lightly greased 8-inch square glass baking dish. (If using both red and golden beets, separate on different sides of pan to prevent red from bleeding onto golden.) Pour 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar and next 4 ingredients over beets; season with salt and pepper. Cover tightly with foil. Bake at 400° for 40 to 45 minutes or until tender. Uncover and let cool to room temperature, reserving beet juice. Peel beets (see tips, below), and slice into 1/4-inch rounds.
- 2. Separate leaves of endive, and tear radicchio into large pieces; arrange on a large platter or shallow bowl. Layer beets, oranges, fennel, and onion.
- 3. Whisk mustard and remaining 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar into reserved beet juice; season with salt and pepper. Serve with salad. Garnish, if desired.
- Sara's tips for cooking beets:
- You can use different varieties of beets interchangeably. Whole baby beets are nice in a salad. I also like yellow beets for both their mild flavor and beautiful color.
- Roast beets for the best flavor.
- Peel beets by hand after they're cooked. The peel slips off easily, but it can be messy--wear gloves and an apron, and rub skin off with a paper towel.
- Don't rinse peeled beets under running water. You'll wash away the wonderful flavor you just cooked into them.
- Lightly rub a pumice stone over your soapy fingers if beets stain your hands.
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