I recently tasted this dish at one of our favorite restaurants in Laguna Beach.  I am not one for beets, but I have found in the summer they are ubiquitous on many restaurant menus in the southwest.  I bit into the salad and the layers of flavors with the beet dust, pistachios and whipped Roquefort layered with the sweetness and yet tartness of the beets just placed me in heaven.  I knew I had to duplicate this recipe even though at the time I never knew there was such a thing as beet dust!!!  (better known as beet powder)  This is a summer salad winner.  Enjoy!

Serves:

4 – 6

Total Time:

60 minutes

To Make

Ingredients
  • 3 Golden whole beets
  • 3 Red whole beets
  • 4 oz. Roquefort (room temperature)
  • 3 Tbs. mascarpone cheese
  • 2 tsp. fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 tsp. olive oil
  • 2 cups baby arugula
  • 1 Tbs. Olive oil
  • 1 Tbs. fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • Salt and pepper
  • ½ cup chopped pistachio nuts
  • 1 Tbs. beet dust
  • 1 Tbs. sugar

      Directions:

      Wash the beets thoroughly and trim off the beet leaves. Before cooking, peel the beets and dice them in 1” square pieces.  Start with the golden beets and separate them in a separate bowl when finished.  Then peel and dice the red beets and place separately from the golden beets. (this is done to keep the red beets from bleeding over and staining the golden beets). 

      Keeping the staining in mind, steam the golden beets in a steamer basket for approximately 25 minutes or until tender and pierces easily with a fork. 

      If you have steamed the golden beets first, you can now add the red beets into the basket of the same steaming water without fear of staining.  Again, steam for approximately 25 minutes or until tender enough to pierce with a fork.  If desired, chill for 30 minutes or serve room temperature.

      In a food processor add the Roquefort, mascarpone cheese, lemon juice and olive oil and pulse until combined.  Place in refrigerator for at least 30 minutes to firm up. 

      In the meanwhile, chop the pistachios into a rough chop, and toss the arugula with 1 Tbs. olive oil and 1 Tbs. fresh squeezed lemon juice, ½ tsp. salt and ¼ tsp. pepper.

      Plate the arugula and then layer the beets starting with the red beets on the bottom with the golden beets on top.

      Form the whipped Roquefort with two spoons into ovals and place them onto the platter.  If plating individually, place two ovals per salad plate. Sprinkle the pistachios over the top of the plate. 

       

      Lastly, combine the beet powder and sugar together in a small bowl making the beet dust. Sprinkle the beet dust over the top of the entire salad, especially the Roquefort ovals and the plate so it glistens and shows the beet dust generously.  Enjoy!

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