Spinach and Beet Salad with Goat Cheese

http://www.salutbaramericain.com/

I never used to be a salad person. I would eat it and enjoy it, but I never really sought it out or really appreciated it. It wasn’t until I couldn’t eat salad that I started to crave it and get more creative with salad. Crohn’s has kept me away from raw vegetables on and off at different spurts in my life. So here I am now, Crohn’s free, and taking full advantage of this lull in my life. Summer has come on with full force and with that, we have some beautiful veggies showing up in the markets. Baby spinach is one of my favorite greens. You may have noticed that it shows up in some of my favorite dishes.

Since it’s summer time, I like to eat more fresh dishes that don’t require heating up the house.

I think it was my sister that introduced me to this Spinach and Beet Salad with Chèvre and Walnuts. I ate it on one of my visits back home to Minneapolis. Since then, I order this salad on whatever menu I see it on. I decided to make it myself. I had recently received some beautiful beets in the CSA and I had everything else in the fridge.

The spinach I used in this salad was prewashed and ready to go. I roasted some beets and I toasted some walnuts in the oven.

I served the salad with a red wine, basil  and shallot vinaigrette that I quickly whipped up in my Cuisinart Mini-Prep processor.

red-wine-vinaigrette


Spinach and Beet Salad with Goat Cheese
 
Author:
Recipe type: Salad
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 1 small bunch of beets (about 4-5 small beets)
  • 1 bag of pre-washed baby spinach
  • 1 cup walnuts
  • 1 small red onion, sliced thinly
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • sea salt
  • fresh ground pepper
  • goat cheese (Chèvre)
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 375.
  2. Trim off the ends of the beets and place in foil. Sprinkle olive oil over the beets and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Wrap in the foil.
  3. Roast the beets in the oven for about 40 minutes.
  4. Remove from oven and cool.
  5. While the beets cool, place the walnuts on some foil and toast in the oven for about 5 minutes.
  6. Remove from oven and cool.
  7. When cooled down, slice the beets thinly.
  8. Layer the salad - first the spinach, then the beets, then the onions and walnuts, then the goat cheese.
  9. Sprinkle on a dressing of your choice. I would recommend a red wine vinaigrette.

 

Red Wine, Basil and Shallot Vinaigrette
 
Author:
Recipe type: Salad Dressing
Ingredients
  • 1 shallot
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 15 basil leaves
  • 5 tbsp. red wine vinegar
  • 2 tbsp. honey
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • 2 tsp. sea salt
  • 2 tsp. fresh ground black pepper
Instructions
  1. Place everything except for the olive oil in to the food processor.
  2. Start blending the mixture.
  3. Slowly pour in the olive oil and let the mixture emulsify.
  4. Transfer dressing to a container.
  5. Enjoy on your favorite salad.

spinach-and-beet-salad

 

Chilled Pea and Basil Soup

chilled-pea-soup

This month’s Kosher Connection link-up features chilled soups.  It’s June, and the weather is heating up. Always happy to have a cool treat.

I love challenges like this. I never really make cold soup. I do love a good gazpacho every so often, but chilled soups don’t really happen in this kitchen. If I made hot chicken soup every week in the summer, nobody would complain. We’re just a warm soup kind of family and a little heat doesn’t usually stop me. Myself excluded that is. I’m not in to warm soups on a hot day.

This challenge got me thinking about different flavors that I love. I wasn’t going to do a gazpacho. That’s been done. I have several friends that love chilled fruit soups, but that’s just not me.  I thought about the various herbs that I have growing on my deck and then looked to the beautiful early summer veggies I’ve been seeing at the farmer’s markets. I knew I had to focus on some seasonal vegetables and herbs. At the market today, I came upon some beautiful peas. Yum! These English peas were amazing and so sweet. I then turned to my favorite herb  – my basil plant. I had to turn these two in to soup.

I began by sauteeing up some shallots and garlic in a bit of butter and olive oil. I then added the peas and the chopped basil. After they cook for a few minutes, I added in some vegetable broth and let the soup cook a bit.

peasoupbroth

Once the peas were sufficiently cooked, I pureed the soup with my immersion blender and added some Greek yogurt to the soup.

peasoup-immersion-blender

I removed the soup from the heat and then began to cool it down. If you’d like, you can transfer the soup to a bowl and then sit it over a larger bowl of ice for a quick chill down.

I served the soup chilled with some additional Greek yogurt stirred in. Love the flavor. The sweetness of the peas combined with the basil really work well together. Will definitely make this again.

chilled-pea-soup

Chilled Pea and Basil Soup
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: Soup
Cuisine: Summer Soups
Serves: 6
Ingredients
  • 1 tbsp. butter
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 shallot, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 tsp. salt
  • 2 tsp fresh ground pepper
  • ¾ pound English peas (or use frozen petite peas)
  • 1 cup chopped basil
  • 2 cups vegetable broth
  • 2 tbsp. Greek yogurt or sour cream (plus extra for garnishing)
  • additional salt and pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Heat up the butter and olive oil in a medium-size pot.
  2. Add in the garlic and shallot and saute until soft.
  3. Stir in the salt and pepper.
  4. Stir in the peas and the basil. Saute or a minute or two.
  5. Add in the vegetable broth.
  6. Let the mixture come to a boil. Cover the pot and turn down the heat.
  7. Cook for about 7 minutes.
  8. After about 7 minutes, the peas should be cooked enough.
  9. Use a standard blender or an immersion blender to puree the soup.
  10. Stir in some Greek yogurt.
  11. Taste the soup a bit. Add additional salt and pepper as needed.
  12. Serve the soup garnished with additional basil and yogurt.
  13. Enjoy!

 

Don’t forget to check out some of the other great cold soups as part of the Kosher Connection link-up!

 


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