Golden beetroot salad with honeyed walnuts

The beet is the most intense of vegetables. The radish, admittedly, is more feverish, but the fire of the radish is a cold fire, the fire of discontent, not of passion. Tomatoes are lusty enough, yet there runs through tomatoes an undercurrent of frivolity. Beets are deadly serious.

Tom Robbins

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Serves 4

4 small purple beetroots
4 small golden beetroots
100 g walnuts
2 tablespoons honey
50g soft goat’s cheese, broken into small pieces
1 cup baby rocket leaves
1 cup baby spinach leaves
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
3 tablespoons olive oil
sea salt and black pepper

Preheat oven to 180 C. Wrap the beetroots in aluminium foil – in separate packages for golden and purple beets. Bake in the oven for 1 hour, or until tender. While the beets are cooking, spread the walnuts onto a shallow baking tray that is lined with silicon baking paper. Drizzle over the honey and place in the oven. Cook for about 15 minutes, turning once or twice. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool. Once the beetroots are cooked, unwrap from the foil and as soon as they are cool enough to handle, peel away the skin. It’s a messy job, and you may want to wear gloves to avoid staining your fingers. Chop the beetroots into quarters and place in separate small bowls. Sprinkle the vinegar and olive oil over the beetroots, half in each bowl and then season well with salt an pepper. Place the salad greens on the bottom of a serving platter. Top with the beetroot, walnuts and goat’s cheese. Serve at once.

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