Skip to content

You can’t “beet” the Farmers Market

Farmers Market

Last Saturday I stopped by the Placerville Farmers Market for the first time this year.  I was amazed at all the fresh fruits and veggies that were available this early in the season.  I was also surprised about the amount of people that were there until I remembered that the Wagon Train was in town for their annual parade.  I did not stick around for that, because it gets kind of crazy in town, but it is certainly an interesting and fun event that’s been around a very long time.

Placerville closed for Wagon Train Parade

I love to go to the Farmers Market because there are always lots of interesting things and people to see.  The vibrant colors of the fruits, vegetables and flowers are a photographers candy store.

Vibrant flowers

I have never been a big fan of beets, but Yes!Chef! hinted around for me to pick some up if I saw any.  He normally would have gone with me, but he had another appointment, so I was on my own. I found these pretty peach-colored beets next to the (yukky) red ones and so I asked the seller what the difference was between the two.  He said that the peach ones had a milder flavor.  Well, folks, that’s all it took to sell me.

Red Beets and Peach Colored Beets

Yes, there were all kinds of things to look at and to buy. I ended up purchasing some torpedo red onions, some peach colored beets, an artichoke flower and some fresh cured bacon.

I thought the beets looked pretty, but I was skeptical as to their taste.  My only experience with beets has been with  canned beets that occasionally show up in a salad when you are out to dinner at a less than fancy place…one or two big red slices sitting on top of a perfectly good salad, leaving a messy red stain on top of the too much blue cheese dressing.  (You know the type of restaurant I’m talking about…good food, but homey.)  Invariably everyone at the table stabs the beet with their forks, holds them up in the air and says, “Does anyone want my beet?”  My husband (and my mom) have been the only takers that I am aware of. If no one spoke up, the beet ended up on the side of the plate along with any lettuce pieces that might have been tainted with any “beet juice”.

Needless to say, my husband was pleased with my purchase and set about roasting the beets for the salad that he had in mind.

Before roasting, tossed with olive oil

After Roasting, they became beautiful…

Because I was a little skeptical, but a good trooper, Yes!Chef made our first Gin and Tonics of the season.  And…bonus…he made roasted chicken on the barbie.

Yes!Chef! roasting chicken in his new barbecue

I would like to take just a paragraph to mention that Yes!Chef! bought himself a brand new Weber barbecue.  I was a little shocked because he has owned the old one since before we met…which was a long time ago.  I asked him if he was going to throw the old one away and this is the look he gave me.  “No!”, he said as if I asked him if he was going to give away his first born.    “I will use it as a smoker, ” he said with a loving glance towards the old, decrepit Weber.  I was kind of glad for this attitude because I would hate for him to have a “she’s old and doesn’t work as well as she used to, so I’m going to dump her” attitude towards this writer/photographer.

He finished up the chicken on the grill and while it was resting he made a delicious beet salad.

Butterflied Grilled chicken

Roasted Beets, Mandarin Oranges, walnut and Parmesan salad

The beets were tender and sweet.  The Mandarin oranges were juicy and, well, Mandarin Orange-y. There was a crunch added with the walnuts and the Parmesan added the salty flavor.  It was a very refreshing and (surprisingly to me) tasty salad.  The roasted chicken went perfectly with the salad. And that was our Saturday night dinner.  Another winner from Yes!Chef!.

Here’s the recipe:

Ingredients

  • 4 medium mild beets, tops removed and scrubbed
  • Extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 can Mandarin Oranges, drained, but reserving juice
  • 1/4 cup toasted, chopped walnuts
  • Kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper
  • Parmesan Cheese, grated with a large hole grater

Directions

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

Put a large piece of aluminum foil on a baking sheet and put the beets on it. Drizzle olive oil over them and wrap them tightly in the foil, making a packet. Roast until a knife inserted into the largest beet meets no resistance, about 1 hour to 1 hour and 15 minutes. Cool and remove the skins by rubbing the beets with a paper towel.

Thinly slice the beets and arrange on serving plates. Scatter the orange segments and walnuts over the sliced beets.  Drizle the plates with olive oil and reserved Mandarin Orange juice over each plate. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Garnish with grated Parmesan Cheese and serve.

The above recipe was adapted from this one.

If you are the type of person who fork stabs the one red slice of canned beets from your salad and waves it in the air, hoping to give it to someone else in your dining party because “…if it looks creepy, it must taste creepy”, then I know you are a good candidate for trying this beet salad.  It not only does not look creepy, it is actually pretty.  And! It tastes great.  Try it, then let me know.

About these ads
18 Comments Post a comment
  1. Never thought to combine beet& manderin orange sounds so good. I’ll make this!

    June 16, 2012
  2. Those beets do look good! Nice combination with the mandarin orange :-) Will have to try!

    June 17, 2012
    • I don’t think you will regret making this. Thank you for stopping by.

      June 18, 2012
  3. I love beets, but roasted golden beets are my favorite. Try it with mango and quinoa, with a light lemon dressing. So so good! And I love the first gin and tonic of the season, my favorite libation, too! Looks great!

    June 17, 2012
  4. Sounds delicious, never made a beet salad – will try it. Your pictures are beautiful!

    June 17, 2012
  5. Must be a very very refreshing salad ¡¡

    June 18, 2012
  6. Nice combo. Thanks for the inspiration!

    June 18, 2012
  7. love my farmers market! just posted about some fabulous brussels sprouts. :)

    http://popthebubbly1.wordpress.com/2012/06/18/sprout-of-this-world/

    xxo

    June 18, 2012
  8. Your photos are so vivid with the orange and peach hues in your salad. I have never seen peach beets before, but I will definitely try seeking them out next time I am out at the farmer’s market.

    June 21, 2012
    • I have never seen them before, either, but I understand that they are not really that exotic. They are quite tasty, too, which was surprising to me. Thank you for stopping by.

      June 21, 2012
  9. eliotthecat #

    I love FM! And, I think I have a jacket just like one of those hanging there. The salad looks awesome!

    June 22, 2012
    • I really liked those jackets and I am addicted to FM. Thanks for your kind words.

      June 23, 2012
  10. I nominated you for the Very Inspiring Blogger Award! :)

    June 24, 2012

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 2,738 other followers

%d bloggers like this: