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Put time into dinner now, and you can make it last forever -- or at least the whole week. Welcome to Halfway to Dinner, where we show you how to stretch your staples every which way.
Today: Luise Vindahl and David Frenkiel from Green Kitchen Stories take beets from a side to the main event of your dinners this week.
The long, dark, and cold winters in Scandinavia force vegetable lovers like us to dig deep down into the ground to find anything that actually manages to grow. One vegetable group that we have always been able to rely on? Root vegetables -- our favorite being oh-so-colorful beets. We roast them as chips, shred them in soups, cook them in stews, juice them in smoothies, and eat them raw in salads. Heck, we even use them in desserts! They're one of the most versatile vegetables that we know.
Here is our very own twist on a classic recipe. Most Beef Bourguignon recipes call for beef and bacon, so it's not the most appropriate dish for vegetarians. But we reckoned that there must be a way to transform that rich, wine-oozing hot pot into something more to our taste. After a few experiments it turned out that we were only one letter away. We turned beef into beet! We also added large chunks of mushrooms to give the stew the right texture and flavor.
More: Looking for another vegetarian take on Beef Bourguignon? Try Deb Perelman's Genius version.
Upside-Down Raw Beet Salad
In this recipe you simply shred raw beets and mix them with lettuce, avocado, lime, herbs, and a few other vegetables. Then you stuff everything into a container, turn it upside down and top it with fresh goat cheese. The result is a gorgeous beet tower; make it a meal with great bread on the side.
This warming soup tastes wonderful during the cold months. It has nice hints of mustard seeds and cumin, and the beet shreds give it a great texture. It's darn good, especially with a fleck of horseradish yogurt on top.
We thought it would be a fun challenge to turn beets into a spread. And as it turns out, it works well. We used avocado and cashews to make it creamy, and mustard, capers, lemon, and thyme to give it some extra punch. You can use it on crackers, in a wrap, on bread, or as a side dish to any meal. We like to serve it with roasted sweet potatoes, sunchokes, and thinly sliced raw carrot, radish, and rucola.
Beet and Feta Burgers
We've tried our fair share of veggie burgers. There are a gazillion meat substitute products out there, but we prefer a straight-up delicious veggie burger. The flavor and texture of the beetroot is essential and affects everything in the burger. We have added feta cheese for extra flavor, but you could sub it for tofu as well.
Serves 6 to 8, depending on the burger size
For the Burgers:
3 cups grated raw beets (about 4 to 5 beets)?
1 1/2 cups rolled oats
1 small onion?
7 ounces sheep’s feta cheese or firm tofu?
2 cloves garlic?
2 tablespoons olive oil?
2 organic eggs ?
1 handful fresh basil?
Salt and pepper to taste
For the Toppings:?
Lettuce or cabbage?
Photos by Luise Vindahl