Beet, arugula, goat cheese and toasted walnut salad

Before you even take a bite of this beet salad you’ll be impressed. Just the colors alone make it wonderful. The paper thin sliced beets, walnuts, cheese and arugula create a flavor combination that works in spades.

Beet, arugula and goat cheese salad

Sunday we went on a breathtaking (and for me near bone-breaking) hike into the Sabine hills near Farfa. It happened that the day was ensconced between two rainy days and yet Sunday happened to be one of the most exquisite days of the season. Had I not been struggling to keep my footing it would have been spectacular. Seriously though, it was beautiful and I’ll write more about it and the wonderful group that organized the day in a later post.

Following the hike we had a simple lunch in the fattoria. Bruschetta with the fattoria’s organic olive oil, a beet salad (recipe below), a mundane plate of penne pasta with tomato sauce and an over the moon flourless chocolate nut cake (once I try this out I’ll post a recipe).

Back to the salad. I’m not really a beet person, but this antipasto salad used them to their best advantage.

Ingredients (for two people):

  • Two cooked, peeled beets
  • Walnuts, shelled and lightly toasted  – 50 grams
  • Arugula – 2 cups lightly packed
  • Goat cheese (or other soft, absolutely fresh cheese: I prefer ricotta) – 100 grams

Procedure:

  • Slice the beets paper thin and drain thoroughly. I suggest using a mandolin.
  • Arrange the beets circularly in a fan shape on an individual platter.
  • Top the beets with dollops of cheese and toasted walnuts. Top the salad with arugula.
  • Lightly salt the salad and drizzle with extra virgin olive oil.

Sometimes the simplest ingredients that can be put together in two seconds produce some of the most amazing results! We were all impressed and looking forward to the second act (our pasta) but alas great beginnings don’t always lead to great ends. Try the salad though. With summer at our fingertips it’ll be a great addition to any summer meal repertoire. Add a crusty Italian hearth loaf and a crisp, chilled white wine and your meal is complete!

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