24 March 2012

A Happy Salad for the Weekend

Living in Seoul has made me realise how very spoilt we are in Australia with our year round access to fresh produce.  Sure, some of that comes from apples stored forever and a day, but some of that must come from the fact that Australia is a really big country with a variety of climates from tropical to arid to whatever Tasmania is.  And we kind of take it for granted that you can get good quality lettuce, pears, beans, avocados, grapes, peas and other such deliciousness at pretty much any time of the year.  

But I take this for granted no more!  In Seoul, access to fresh fruit and vegetables is incredibly seasonal. These days when I see something new and tasty appear on the supermarket shelf I get genuinely excited and I make the most of it while I can, because who knows if it'll still be on the shelves next week.  

Currently beetroot has been making a much appreciated appearance at our local supermarket, and to celebrate I've been making this happy salad a lot!  It's a great entree for a simple meal - maybe of flash fried steak, red wine sauce and a crusty bread stick.  I love the sweet earthy flavour of roasted beetroot, and the bright colour it adds to the salad - yum!

Beetroot + Goats Cheese Salad

1. Roast your beetroot - wrap it in foil and stick it in the oven at 180C for about two hours, you'll know it's done when a thin skewer passes easily through it. 

2. Skin your beetroot - rub it under running water.  You may want to wear rubber gloves here as it can get rather purple.  Leave to cool for a bit and then chop it in to chunks. 

3. Toast some walnuts - crumble a handful of walnuts in to a heavy based pot and toast over medium heat, stirring frequently.  Keep an eye on them so they don't burn! 

4. Toss leaves and beetroot in dressing* - throw some tasty leaves in a bowl (I like using mache for this, but a soft butter lettuce could work too), add your beetroot chunks and dressing and mix about until everything is well coated. 

5. Put everything together on a plate - divvy out the leaf and beetroot mix, then sprinkle with toasted walnuts and crumbled goats cheese. 

6. Eat!

*Dressing - any basic vinaigrette works well with this salad, so feel free to use your favourite.  If you're curious, here's the one I use: squeeze of lemon juice, 2 tbsp olive oil, 1 tsp dijon mustard, 2 tsp white wine vinegar, sea salt and ground black pepper.


  1. Yummo! I actually slightly envy you the joy of discovering seasonal produce, I wonder if we get a bit jaded here because everything is so available. Havign said that there are some things that stay seasonal - yesterday I had the joy of discovering quinces in the greengrocers and now am lookign forward to the aroma that pervades the house as I poach them in the ovenfor hours.....

  2. We are so very spoiled for fresh food choices in Australia!

    Beetroot and goats cheese = match made in heaven! It's one of my favourite salad combinations and yours looks super yummy!

  3. mmm, delish, that is pretty much like one of my fav salad combos! I bet you savoured every mouthful! My brother just got back from a trip to china where he was amazed by the fresh vegetables they had. And his chinese girlfriend's father drove 50kms to buy him some organic clementines because she told him he liked organic/bio food. Oh Australians, we are SO spoilt for choice! It's a little embarrassing, right?
    I am always interested in seeing how other countries/cultures eat and whether it's seasonal, staple based or produced on demand. Can you share some yummy korean dishes too please? I guess that's why they like the kimchi, it's pickled!

  4. I love the look of this salad ... and I totally agree with Teresa, beetroot and goat's cheese are a perfect combination. It's great that you are actively trying to make the most of seasonal foods ... because yes, here in Australia we are spoilt with what is on offer.

  5. Ooooh, that salad looks so good! I am not a big beetroot fan but it all sounds wonderful!

  6. This looks absolutely delicious! The dressing sounds yummy too :)


Your comments make me happier than you could possibly imagine. Really! Thank you.