I really hope you enjoy this recipe, as it uses 3 of my favourite ingredients – beetroot, goat’s cheese and watercress!
Beetroots are in season at the moment, and who can resist them when they're bursting with colour and sweet earthy flavours? In this recipe I have used the ‘golden’ variety, but feel free to use whichever type of beetroot you prefer. Beets are packed full of antioxidants, fibre and vitamin B folate; an essential for expectant mothers. They are such a versatile ingredient and can be used fresh, cooked or pickled. Try them in curries, salads, roasts, dips, risotto, sandwiches, soup, pasta or even stuffed in ravioli - Yum! And don't forget to use the beetroot greens, use them as you would any green leafy vegetable.
I’ve always been a cheese fiend, and to date my favourite cheese is Meredith Dairy Goat Cheese in Extra Virgin Olive Oil. I discovered it 12 years ago in the fridge of a dear friend’s parents, and the love affair is still going strong. Back then you could only find this cheese in special gourmet deli’s, but now it’s available everywhere! I love this particular goat’s cheese because it has a mild, smooth, creamy texture that melts in your mouth - the very thought makes me salivate... and it's very simply marinated with garlic, thyme and peppercorns. It goes so beautifully with the earthiness of this salad, and if you do use Meredith, make sure you use the marinated olive oil in your dressing! Don’t pour it down the sink!
If you’ve decided to opt for a different type of goat’s cheese, be sure to select a milder variety, or else it will overpower the salad.
Watercress season is just winding up, but you can still find it at your friendly neighbourhood Asian grocers during winter. It’s full of vitamins, so it’s another good one to get into the habit of buying. I enjoy it because it’s so crisp and has a lovely peppery note.
If you’re unable to find any watercress, then a good replacement is rocket lettuce.
I’ve used pistachios in the watercress dressing - because they were in my pantry - but you can just as easily use walnuts, which are in season, or you can go nut-free for a smoother, less chunky dressing. The capers in the dressing are already salty, so no need to season with salt, just a touch of pepper.
This salad is a lovely dish to share with your friends, it looks so beautiful on the dinner table - though alternatively it can be easily assembled at a picnic!
I love salad all year 'round (not just in summer!) and this one can be adapted to suit what’s in season. Serve it as a side or on its own, but most of all enjoy it with the ones you love and a nice glass of Sauvignon Blanc.
ROASTED BEETROOT SALAD w GOAT CHEESE
+ WATERCRESS DRESSING
Gluten Free I Vegetarian I Serves 2-4 as a side
- 1 bunch baby beetroot
- 100g goats cheese
- Olive oil
- Salt & freshly cracked pepper
- 1 bunch watercress
- 1 tsp salted capers, rinsed
- ¼ cup pistachios
- 1 tsp Dijon Mustard
- 1 tsp cider vinegar
- ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
- Preheat oven to 220 °C.
- Wash and trim the tops of your beetroot. Place beetroot in a backing tray, drizzle with a little olive oil, and season with salt & pepper. Roast for 20 minutes, or until tender. When beetroot is cool enough to handle, peel the skin, cut in half.
- With your watercress, rinse, chop off the top half of the watercress, arrange leaves on your serving dish. Place the remaining watercress stems into a food processor along with your capers, pistachios, Dijon mustard, cider vinegar, olive oil and pepper. Pulse until combined and chunky.
- To assemble, arrange your goat's cheese and beetroot on top of the watercress leaves, then spoon over your dressing. Enjoy.