Friday, February 8, 2013

Roasted Beets with Yogurt, Olive Oil & Balsamic Vinegar

To celebrate seven years together, a few weekends ago Mike and I had an anniversary lunch at ABC Kitchen.  We went armed with a gift card, a thoughtful engagement gift from my boss, meaning we were at liberty to order dishes and drinks that we might otherwise skimmed over in the name of keeping the bill reasonably priced for a mid-day meal.  One of the dishes we ordered was the Roasted Beets with Organic Yogurt.  Mike, not being a lover of yogurt, was a bit skeptical, but figured he could just enjoy the beets.

When the dish arrived, the beautiful colors of the roasted beets just begged for us to try that dish first, before any of the others on the table.  It was so unbelievably delicious!  Mike even enjoyed the yogurt, with the juices from the beets, the olive oil and balsamic vinegar, and crunch of sea salt combining to make a bright, irresistible mixture.

What I love so much about Dan Kluger's menu is that the basic concept of so many of his dishes is usually quite simple - a few ingredients, fresh from the farmer's market, combined in a unique way.  I knew I could attempt to replicate the dish at home and achieve something quite similar, without needing to spend a fortune on ingredients I didn't already have.

So last Sunday morning I roasted lots of beets, then Mike and I worked to rub all of the skins off so we could make it to the gym on time.  The beets cooled and then for lunch, I quickly assembled the dish for a healthy, scrumptious lunch. 

Roasted Beets with Yogurt, Olive Oil & Balsamic Vinegar
Inspired by Dan Kluger

You can use whatever combination of beets you like for this dish, just be sure to roast each variety separately, as their cooking times may vary.  For the purposes of the photos, in order to really bring out the beautiful colors of the beets, I only plated a few beets, but be sure to really pile on the beets when you sit down to enjoy your dish!

For the Beets
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
3 tablespoons kosher salt
1 pound beets (I used a mix of baby red, white, and chioggia beets) – washed, scrubbed and separated by color

For the Plated Dish
2 cups Greek yogurt
Roasted beets, cooled, trimmed, and cut into quarters
1/4 cups balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Tarragon, coarsely minced
Maine sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper

Prepare the beets: Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  In a large mixing bowl, combine the olive oil, vinegar, and salt.  Toss each beet type with in the mixture and wrap in a tight foil pouch (Note: each type of beet should be cooked separately). Place foil pouches on a baking tray and roast for about 1 hour (Note: if you are using larger beets, increase cooking time to about 1 1/2 hours).  Check the beets using a small paring knife to see if they are tender. Once done, rub off skins with a clean towel.

Assemble the Dish: In two bowls, spoon yogurt to cover bottom. Place beets in an even layer on top. Drizzle with vinegar and olive oil. Garnish with tarragon and sprinkle with salt and pepper to finish. Serve immediately.

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