Recipe...Citrus Beet Salad with Greens and Feta

Citrus Beet Salad with Greens and Feta is shown on the right.  This was the lovely spread at Mom's house at Easter Dinner!

Last summer, some friends who run an organic farm had an overabundance (and I mean OVERABUNDANCE) of beets, and every time I visited their farm, they offered me the opportunity to poach as many beets as I could pick from their garden.  I was thrilled...sort of.  As a child, I hated beets.  They were cold slippery red things that came out of a can, with a sort of nondescript horrible texture that I could not seem to slip past my tongue down my throat.  In short, they made me gag.

So, what to do with all these...beets?  After enlisting the help of several beet-literate friends and trying several recipes, I am now a beet convert!  Truth be told, I actually LOOK for fresh beets at the co-op when I do my shopping now....I have come a long way!

Do you have weird memories of beets, too?  Take my advice, they are worth trying as an adult, but eat them fresh, roasted.  You will not regret it!  I like the idea of using the entire beet, greens and all, in a recipe.  The greens are nutritious and taste wonderful.   

So here is an original recipe, which can be eaten hot or cold.  You can take it to a picnic or eat it over baby greens for lunch.  It is super-versatile, and tastes absolutely delicious.  Prepare it ahead of time, and eat it all week.  Enjoy!

Citrus Beet Salad with Greens and Feta

Serves 8

8 medium or 12 small fresh beets with greens
3 T olive oil
3/4 c water
3/4 c orange juice
2T balsamic vinegar 
1T honey
sea salt
freshly ground pepper
1 c feta cheese

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Scrub beets, chop off tops and bottoms, and cut into 1" cubes.  Place in a single layer with 1 1/2 T olive oil and water and roast for 45 minutes or until tender.  While the beets are roasting, wash greens and chop.  Heat remaining 1 1/2 T olive oil in a wok or large frying pan, and stir fry greens until tender-crisp, about 2 minutes.  Immediately remove from heat.  When the beets are finished roasting, drain liquid, and pour beets into a bowl with honey, orange juice and balsamic vinegar and toss well.  Toss occasionally, marinating for at least 1 hour.  Drain most of the liquid, toss with greens, sprinkle feta on top and serve.  You can either reheat, serve at room temperature, or chill and eat as a salad.

Nutrition Facts

8 Servings
Amount Per Serving
  Calories                     168.4
  Total Fat                    9.3 g
              Saturated Fat            3.5 g
              Polyunsaturated Fat 0.6 g
              Monounsaturated Fat4.6 g
  Cholesterol                16.7 mg
  Sodium                      317.5 mg
  Potassium                  493.3 mg
  Total Carbohydrate   17.7 g
              Dietary Fiber             3.7 g
              Sugars                       12.6 g
  Protein                       4.9 g
  Vitamin A                 8.9 %
  Vitamin B-12            5.3 %
  Vitamin B-6             9.0 %
  Vitamin C                 25.2 %
  Vitamin D                 0.0 %
  Vitamin E                  5.6 %
  Calcium                     12.0 %
  Copper                      5.9 %
  Folate                        36.3 %
  Iron                           7.2 %
  Magnesium                9.4 %
  Manganese                21.8 %
  Niacin                        3.4 %
  Pantothenic Acid     4.3 %
  Phosphorus                11.7 %
  Riboflavin                 13.2 %
  Selenium                   5.4 %
  Thiamin                     6.5 %
  Zinc                           6.7 %

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.