I love Thursdays because we have a local Farmers Market in our small town. I usually get there early, choose a variety of fresh, local vegetables, and throw something together for dinner. It's kind of a game for me. Like the show Chopped, but without the goat brains in the Mystery Basket.
I picked out some beautiful golden beets today along with some baby potatoes, red organic onions, a bag of fresh arugula, some Thai basil, and tarragon. Here's how they ended up on our dinner table.
- 3 medium, golden beets
- about 2 lbs of baby potatoes (I used an assortment of colors)
- 1/2 small red onion, cut into thin slivers
- 4 cups of baby arugula
- 1/2 cup of toasted walnuts
- a handful of chopped fresh tarragon
- a handful of chopped fresh basil (Thai or sweet)
- dressing (recipe below)
- 4 oz. goat cheese or crumbled feta
The beets will take the longest to prepare, so start with those. While they are cooking, prepare the potatoes.
beets: Cut off the greens but leave about an inch on the beets. This will keep the juices from leaking out, along with nutrients and flavor. Save the greens for another day, if you like them, or discard. Place in a medium saucepan, cover with water and bring to a boil over high heat. Turn the heat down to a simmer and let these cook for about 45-50 minutes or until fork tender. When they are done, the skins will easily slip off with your hands. I do this under cold running water. Cut into bite size chunks and place in a large bowl along with the potatoes.
potatoes: I like mine roasted, although you can also boil them whole until they are fork tender. To roast them, I toss the whole potatoes in olive oil, sprinkle with a little salt and pepper, and place them on a baking sheet in a 400º oven for about 30 minutes or until fork tender. They may take a little longer, depending on their size. Cut into bite size chunks and place in the same bowl as the beets.
Add the slivered onions to the bowl of beets and potatoes and pour the dressing over all and toss. Let this sit while you continue preparing the rest of the salad. The warm vegetables soak up all that great flavor from the dressing.
- 1 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1/2 cup tarragon vinegar
- a splash of balsamic vinegar
- fresh squeezed juice of 1 lemon
- 2 TBS stone ground dijon mustard
- 1 tsp honey
- salt and pepper to taste
Whisk it all together and pour over the vegetables to coat. Toss well. Reserve a little for the arugula. This is a lot of dressing. Refrigerate any left over for another salad.
Add chopped tarragon, chopped basil, and toasted walnuts to the large bowl of vegetables and toss. Dress the arugula with a little of the dressing. Plate the salad over the arugula and top with the crumbled goat cheese.