Today’s salad is both tangy and sweet: tiny mandarin oranges along side creamy goat cheese and rich beets make for a healthy and delicious weekday meal. Lunch or dinner, you will want to make this again!
I must give credit to my friend Anthony for this dish. We had a long weekend of wine, cheese and bread and wanted something light. He whipped up this fun and tasty dish in no time! This creates two large salads but can be doubled easily.
4 whole beets, cut into quarters
4 small mandarins, peeled and separated into segments
4-6 ounces crumbled goat cheese
Half of one small red onion or a large shallot, thinly sliced
One quarter cup of toasted and chopped pecans
Cilantro, one large handful washed and roughly chopped
Salt and pepper, to taste
Olive oil, a few tablespoons to mix the ingredients
Salad greens, about 5 ounces, washed and dressed
Wash and set aside the salad greens in a large bowl. We used baby arugula with a simple vinaigrette (recipe to follow) but any simple, fresh green would be an excellent base.
Cut the beets, onion and cilantro. Segment the oranges. Place these ingredients in a bowl with the salt and pepper (Note: Goat cheese is salty so remember when seasoning.) and a few tablespoons of olive oil. Toss and set aside to marinate. (Note: This can be set aside for a few hours ahead for maximum flavor!)
Toast the nuts in a dry pan on medium heat for 3-5 minutes and chop the cilantro. Set aside. (Note: Walnuts would be a fine alternative too. Great protein too!)
Assemble all of the ingredients including the goat cheese (Note: Feta would be a great alternative too!) in a serving dish. Sprinkle the nuts on top and add additional olive oil, if needed.
Place the greens in a bowl and add a few spoonfuls of the beet salad on top, to serve individually. The simple greens are a light base to the tangy and sweet nature of the beet salad! Beets, nuts and fresh greens make this a healthy meal and the goat cheese and oranges make you forget it’s good for you! This takes less than thirty minutes to assemble and you should have most ingredients on hand. Enjoy!
Fresh lemon juice, 1/8 cup
Rice or Apple Cider vinegar, 1/8 cup
Dijon mustard, 1 tablespoon
Salt and pepper, 1/2 teaspoon
Olive oil, about 1/3 cup
Splash of orange juice or teaspoon of honey
Combine the lemon and vinegar. Add the seasoning and mustard, mix. Whisk the oil in slowly until it combines and thickens a bit. Add the juice or honey to cut the tartness. Mix again. Taste and adjust to your liking. Simple and no additives! Yum.
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