The cold, fertile soil of Picardy is perfect for growing beetroots, and baby beetroots have become a gourmet item. Served with smooth goat's cheese, a simple vinaigrette and some crusty bread, this salad makes a perfect little starter.
- 3 baby red beetroots, trimmed and scrubbed
- 3 baby yellow beetroots, trimmed and scrubbed
- 2 tsp raspberry vinegar
- ½ tsp Dijon mustard
- 1½ tbsp walnut oil (see Note)
- salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tbsp fresh goat's cheese
- 2 tbsp walnut halves, lightly toasted
- 2 tbsp chopped chives
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
Cook the cleaned baby beetroots in a saucepan of lightly salted boiling water for 20 minutes or until tender and a knife inserts easily. Drain the beetroots and stand until cool. Using kitchen gloves, peel the beetroot, then cut in half lengthways.
Meanwhile, place the vinegar, mustard, walnut oil and a little salt and pepper in a small bowl and whisk to combine.
If the goat's cheese is firm, soften it with a spoon, then spread it in the centre of 2 plates. Arrange the beetroot around the goat’s cheese, then scatter the walnuts over the top. Drizzle the dressing over the beetroot and sprinkle with chives just before serving.
• Make sure the walnut oil you buy has been stored in the refrigerator because it will quickly turn rancid if left at room temperature.
Photography by Benito Martin. Styling by Jerrie-Joy Redman-Lloyd. Food preparation by Alice Storey. Creative concept by Lou Fay.
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