I’m fairly certain no one will ever charge me with excessive frugality. But every once in a while, I manage to create a recipe that demonstrates a real “snout to tail” or “roots to leaves” approach to cooking that makes me feel very proud indeed. This here is one such recipe. You see, when I buy beets, like most people, the first thing I do is snip off the greens and stems and toss them straight into the bin. So wasteful! This week, when beets arrived in my CSA box, I vowed to change my profligate ways.
My usual approach to a salad like this is to add lots of lettuce leaves to bulk it up. Instead, I chose to use the beet greens I already had staring up at me on my cutting board. I lightly blanched the greens, tossed them with a tangy, oniony dressing, and layered them into the salad with the tomatoes and beetroot. The greens, which have a similar flavor to collards or kale, added contrasting texture and some solid earthiness to the dish. This salad certainly illustrates the maxim “waste not want not”, for I was wanting of nothing more after digging into this beautiful plate of food.
2 scallions, thinly sliced into rounds
1 tablespoon seeded mustard
3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
4 cups shredded beet greens (from 4 medium beets)
4 medium beets, roasted (see Summertime Beet Relish for roasting instructions), cooled to room temperature, and sliced into rounds
2 small yellow tomatoes, sliced into rounds
2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh dill
1 tablespoon coarsely chopped fresh flat leaf parsley
1/4 cup toasted walnuts, roughly chopped
1/4 cup Greek yogurt
Salt and cracked black pepper to taste
- First make the dressing so that the scallions have time to pickle. After slicing the scallions, set aside about half of the dark green slices. Place the remainder of the scallion in a screw top jar and add the rest of the dressing ingredients. Shake well to combine.
- To make the salad, in a large pot of boiling water, add the beet greens. Cook for 1 minute, until just wilted. Drain and to cool to room temperature. Add 1 tablespoon of the dressing to coat the greens.
- Toss the sliced beets with 1 tablespoon of the dressing. Layer the beet greens, beet slices, and tomatoes on a large platter. Scatter over dill, parsley, and walnuts and top with a dollop of yogurt. Scatter over the set aside dark green scallion slices. Drizzle over another 1-2 tablespoons of dressing, depending on how zinging you like your salad. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Nutritional analysis based on 4 servings (does not include salt and pepper to taste):
Calories 215, Fat 15g, Sodium 223mg, Carbohydrate 16g, Fiber 5g, Sugar 9g, Protein 6g