We’re having a little dinner party tonight for some old friends who are moving away and a few others who either want to wish them well or, were simply attracted by the promise of free food. Either way, this is one of the dishes they’re getting (along with Italian onion soup and a roasted pork loin stuffed with spinach and pancetta) and it’s so good that I wanted to share it right away rather than let it stack up with the dozens of other recipes I keep meaning to post. I promised Italian food but this salad, made with grainy Dijon mustard and maple vinegar, might be a stretch. Maybe if I say it in Italian – insalata di barbabietola – I might get away with it.
Golden beet salad
2 pounds golden beets
1 teaspoon grainy mustard
4 tablespoons maple vinegar
1/2 teaspoon sugar (optional)
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil plus a little more to drizzle over beets before roasting
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Heat oven to 400 F
Wash beets and trim tops if required. Place each beet on a square of foil wrap large enough to wrap the whole beet. Drizzle olive oil over the beets and seal the foil. Place in the oven for 45 minutes or until you can slide a blade easily into the beet. Remove and set aside to cool. When cool, cut the skin off and dice the beets into quarter inch squares.
Meanwhile, combine mustard, maple vinegar, sugar (if using) and whisk to combine. Add olive oil while whisking. Toss the beets with the dressing and serve at room temperature. Enjoy.