Blood Oranges and Beets

on a bed of greens

A classic combination of beets and blood oranges served on a bed of green peppery arugula is a real showcase of colors and flavors. Deep ruby hue and the hint of raspberry flavor in the oranges creates extra dimension, although, if you can't find blood oranges, regular navel oranges could be used instead.

You could also substitute arugula with mesclun, or compose your own mix of tender salad greens: try tossing together different tender greens and mild lettuces -frisée, baby spinach, inner leaves of Bibb or butterhead lettuce.


Blood oranges and beets salad:

Serves 4 | Preparation time 30 min (plus time to cook beets)

Ingredients:

  • 3 medium red or yellow beets, or a combination (10-12 baby beets)
  • 2 blood oranges, peeled, cut into ½-inch-thick slices, and seeded
  • 4 cups arugula, or mixed greens and baby lettuces
  • 2/3 cup fresh orange juice (from 2-3 blood oranges)
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • ¼ cup sherry vinegar
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste (about ½ scant teaspoon each)
  • 3 ounces soft goat cheese, crumbled
  • 2 tablespoon minced fresh basil
  • 4 tablespoon almonds, toasted and chopped
  • 3 tablespoon grated orange zest

Directions:

  1. Wash and gently scrub the beets. If you bought them with leaves, separate the greens from the beets leaving about ½ inch of the stems attached, and reserve the greens for another use.
  2. To bake the beets, preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Put them in a baking dish, add a little water, and roast until tender when pierced with a fork, about 30 minutes for baby beets and about 45 min to an hour for medium ones. Let stand until cool enough to handle, about 10 minutes and slip the skins off the beets. Slice the beets ¼-inch thick and put them in a medium bowl.

    Alternatively, cook the beets in the microwave or a pressure-cooker to save time.

  3. Combine the orange juice, vinegar, salt and pepper in a small saucepan and bring to boil over high heat. Lower the heat to medium and cook for 10 minutes reducing the liquid to about ½ cup. Remove from the heat and let cool for another 10 minutes. Add 2 tablespoon olive oil and whisk with a fork. Pour about half of the vinaigrette over the beets stiring them gently to coat and set aside for a few minutes to marinate.
  4. Arrange the arugula (or a mix of salad greens) on 4 salad plates. Remove the beets from the bowl using a slotted spoon, and place slices of beets, alternating with the layer of orange slices on the bed of arugula. Combine the remaining vinaigrette with the juices in the bowl and pour over the salads. Top the salads with the goat cheese. Garnish with a sprinkling of basil, chopped almonds and orange zest, if desired.

A good source of calcium, potassium and vitamin C.


More beet recipes? Try these recommendations:

Beet, Mushroom and Apple Borscht - Vegetarian
Beet and Egg Salad
Beet Salads with French Dressing

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