Herby Beets with Crushed Hazelnuts
I think a lot of Americans return from trips to Israel feeling inspired by community, oneness and connection to the land. I always return feeling inspired by vegetables. In the days that I’ve been back in the States from Israel, I’ve been in heavy veggie-chopping mode. This beet salad is part of the aftermath—a bright, colorful salad that will be a perfect compliment to some of our traditional Rosh Hashanah dishes. And it’s a real crowd pleaser—vegan, pareve and gluten free. This salad thing is an inspiration I know I can carry until my next trip to the land!
- 1 pound baby yellow and/or chiogga beets, trimmed
- ½ cup Sherry or red wine vinegar, divided
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 1 red onion
- 1 teaspoon fresh thyme, chopped
- ¼ cup toasted hazelnuts, chopped
- 7-10 sprigs of fresh thyme
- 4-7 sprigs of fresh oregano
- Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Pour ¼ cup vinegar and ¼ cup water in a baking dish. Place beets in dish (liquid should cover bottom inch of beets) and cover with foil (this will create steaming effect). Steam beets in oven until they are tender, about 45 minutes. Remove from oven.
- In the meantime, thinly slice red onion. Mix with remaining ¼ cup vinegar, ¼ cup olive oil, fresh thyme and fresh oregano. Add salt and pepper. Once the beets are cool, rub skins off beets with your fingers or paper towels. Slice beets thinly! If you’re not so skilled with a knife, you can use a mandoline (carefully!).
- Toss beets with the marinade. Season with additional salt to taste and let sit for at least 2 hours.
- Just before serving, garnish with chopped hazelnuts and remaining fresh thyme and oregano.
- Note: Beets can be marinated 2 days ahead—the longer they sit in the marinade, the better!