Roasted Beet Salad with Spiced Chick Peas & Tahini Dressing

Beet salad, generally speaking, does not excite me. It needs textural and temperature contrast, (extreme) freshness and a brush of finesse to stand out from the crowd. Maybe the deli case versions and possibly the beets/chevre/mixed greens restaurant staples are in part responsible. Beets need attention and excitement to really shine.

Beet Salad with Tahini Dressing

I feel like maybe we have stopped thinking about beets and asking where they see themselves outside of where they have been typecast. Is it because they turn everything the colour of strawberry ice cream? Because it is a tricky colour for something that tastes so earthy to pull off. Maybe it’s because they are so intensely sweet….yet savory.

Roasted Beet Salad with Tahini Dressing

The thing is, they are totally worth a bit of a reinvention if it gets you re-interested in them, they are just so good for you. For starters, they are full of the intense pigment, betalain (also seen in pink chard stems and my favourite vacation flowers of the same colour, bougainvillea). They contain anti-carcinogenic and anti-inflammatory powers, promote blood flow and blood purification, and help prevent anemia and constipation. All very good things if you have/had or are hoping to prevent cancer. For optimum health benefits, leave the skin on (you will hardly notice it).

Roasted Beet Salad with Tahini Dressing

I think beets (and most things) taste best warm this time of year. Roast beets right out of the oven taste simple and clean, but this is an amped up version for when you are looking for something a little more interesting. Maybe something that tickles your ethnically diverse food cravings.

Roasted Beet Salad with Tahini Dressing

Tahini, I find to be as earthy as the beets but in a more refined way. They both add something the other needs; an unexpectedly good combo. The lemon and fresh herbs add a raw freshness that the whole dish screams for.

Spiced Chick Peas

Spiced Chick Peas

The chick peas add some texture, while their spices are bold and pair really well with the beets. In fact, for lazier nights, just toss the beets with the chick pea spices, and squeeze some lemon on them, and possibly orange zest, when they come out of the oven. So good, and a nice change from the norm.

Roasted Beet Salad with Tahini Dressing

When the summer roles around (or if it is summer where you are) (lucky), you can make this same salad with the beautiful multi-coloured beets at your farmers market, or even (brace yourself) slip in some juicy slices of fresh tomatoes. Perfect at summer-evening room temp.

Roasted Beet Salad with Tahini Dressing

For this winter-y time of year, I like the beets to be warm. Everything else can be room temp/cold, but the warm beets keep the whole feel of this dish winter-appropriate and cozier than veggies sometimes allow for.

Roasted Beet Salad with Spiced Chick Peas & Tahini Dressing
Author: 
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4-6
 
Ingredients
Veggies:
  • 8-10 Beets
  • 2 tsp Extra Virgin Coconut Oil
  • ½ c Parsley Leaves
  • ½ c Mint leaves
  • ¼ c Black Sesame Seeds
Chick peas:
  • ½ c Cooked Chick Peas (preferably soaked and cooked from scratched with kombu)
  • 2 Garlic cloves, finely minced or grated
  • ½ tsp Cumin, ground
  • ¼ Cinnamon, ground
  • 1 tsp dried Turmeric (2 tsp if using fresh)
  • Several grinds of Black Pepper (to improve turmeric absorption)
  • Extra Virgin Coconut Oil
  • Sea(weed) Salt to taste
Tahini Dressing
  • 3 Tbsp of Tahini (sesame paste)
  • 1-2 Garlic cloves
  • 1 tsp dried Turmeric (2 tsp if using fresh)
  • Several grinds of Black Pepper (to improve turmeric absorption)
  • 1 Lemon, juice and zest
  • Sea(weed) Salt
  • 2 Tbsp Water
Instructions
For the Veggies:
  1. Preheat the oven to 325*F
  2. Wash the beets and leaving the skin on, slice them into ½ inch-ish rounds
  3. Lay them out on a parchment-lined baking sheet and splash about a ¼ c of water over top and drizzle over them 2 tsp of melted extra virgin coconut oil.
  4. Bake for 30-35 minutes, flipping them over on the baking sheet halfway through.
  5. Meanwhile, pick the herbs so that they are ready to go.
For the Chick Peas:
  1. Preheat the oven to 325*F (your beets may already be roasting at this temp).
  2. Toss the cooked chick peas with the spices, melted oil and garlic.
  3. Spread out on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
  4. Roast for 20-25 minutes. Try not to eat them all.
For the Tahini Dressing:
  1. In a blender, blend all ingredients together.
  2. Adjust Seasoning
Assembly:
  1. Lay out the roasted beets so that they are overlapping a bit (think Caprese salad) (these can still be warm or room temp)
  2. Drizzle the tahini dressing overtop.
  3. Scatter the chick peas on top (these can still be warm or room temp).
  4. Sprinkle the sesame seeds and scatter the herbs overtop.

 

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