Earth and Eats Beets

pipe dreams goat cheese, pumpkin seed-espelette brittle, citrus, arugula

Serves 4-6

Ingredients:

  • 12 Baby Red Beets
  • 12 Baby Gold Beets
  • 4 Baby Chiogga Beets
  • 2 Cups Baby Arugula, washed and dried
  • 1 Cup Pumpkinseed-espelette Brittle, crumbled into 1/4” pieces (recipe below)
  • 1 Cup Goat Cheese
  • 1 Cup Heavy Cream
  • 4 Blood Oranges
  • ¼ Cup Champagne Vinegar
  • 1 TB Dijon Mustard
  • 1 Cup Olive Oil
  • 2 TB Sherry Vinegar
  • Salt to taste
  • Black Ground Pepper to taste

Pumpkin Seed Brittle

  • 2 Cups Sugar
  • 6 TB Light Corn Syrup
  • ¼ TB Butter
  • 1 TS Salt
  • 1 TS Baking Soda
  • 1 ½ Cups Pumpkin Seeds, toasted to golden brown

First, make the brittle. Combine sugar corn syrup and butter into a saucepan. Using a candy thermometer, cook over high heat until the temperature reaches 310° F. Add salt and baking soda, and continue cooking until the temperature reaches 320° F. Remove saucepan from the heat and quickly stir in the pumpkin seeds. Immediately pour onto a lightly greased cookie sheet and set aside to cool. When ready to plate the salad, break the brittle into ¼” chunks.

Next, prepare the beets. Pre-heat the oven to 375 F. Toss the 12 red beets with ¼ cup of olive oil, one tablespoon of sherry vinegar, a pinch of salt, and a pinch of ground black pepper. Place the seasoned beets into a shallow baking dish and cover with aluminum foil. Place the dish into the oven for approximately 45 minutes, or until the beets can be easily pierced with a toothpick. Remove beets from the oven, peel, cut into quarters and chill until ready to plate. Repeat the same procedure with the yellow beets, baking separately to retain a variety of colors.

Do not repeat with the baby chiogga beets. Instead, peel the baby chiogga beets and thinly slice with a mandolin or truffle slicer. Set aside in ice water until ready to plate.

While the beets are roasting, prepare the goat cheese mousse. In a food processor or large bowl, add the goat cheese and heavy cream, combining until light and fluffy, similar to a mousse. Season with salt and pepper and keep cold until ready to plate.

Finally, prepare the vinaigrette. Segment the blood oranges, keeping the segments for the salad. Juice the cores of the blood oranges, extracting as much juice as possible. Combine juice with the champagne vinegar, Dijon mustard, and remaining ½ cup of olive oil to make the vinaigrette. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

When ready to eat, place a dollop of the goat cheese mousse in the center of the plate. Toss the arugula with some vinaigrette and season with salt and pepper to taste. Place the arugula on top of the goat cheese. Toss the beets in the vinaigrette. Alternate between placing the beets and orange segments on top of the arugula. Crumble the brittle and sprinkle over.