Beets were never my favorite vegetable. I really didn’t like them as a kid but I finally acquired a taste for them as an adult because I knew they were such a nutritional powerhouse. I actually overdid it with pickled beets during my dietetic internship. During one of my rotations we were able to eat from the hospital salad bar free of charge so everyday I had a salad with canned pickled beets. When you’re a poor graduate student, you don’t turn down free food but I don’t think I’ve had a canned pickled beet since.
Luckily I am still loving fresh beets. I got these beauties at the farmers’ market and was thinking about roasting them but the thought of having the oven on for an hour in the middle of summer just didn’t seem right. So this salad uses fresh beets – no cooking required!
Poor beets are so crazy looking on the outside but once you peel off that ruddy skin and cut off the creepy tail they are so beautiful. I always wonder how amazed the first person was to cut into a beet and see all the beauty inside. What a wonderful surprise it must have been. Does anyone else think about that kind of thing? Maybe just me…
I used a mandolin to slice these beets pretty thin. You could also cut them up by hand. If using a mandolin, please be careful! Those things are dangerous. No fingers should be harmed in making this salad!
My go to dressing ingredients (lemon, olive oil, and honey) plus some fresh basil make the earthy beets taste fresh and light. Top with some goat cheese for a little creaminess and it’s done and delicious.
Plus this salad definitely gets better with age. It would be perfect to make ahead or to take to a potluck.
Golden Beet Salad
3 medium beets*, peeled and sliced thin
3 tablespoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon honey
3 tablespoons olive oil
1/8 teaspoon salt
Handful of fresh basil, chopped finely
1/4 cup goat cheese (optional)
Mix lemon juice, honey, olive oil, salt, and basil together until well combined (easiest way for me is to shake it up in a small mason jar). Place sliced beets in a large bowl, pour dressing over beets and stir well. Crumble goat cheese on salad right before serving if you would like but it is good without cheese too.
*Any color beet would work but to me golden beets have a bit more subtle flavor so when going the raw route I tend to pick golden over red.
Be Happy, Be Healthy!