Beet, Apple and Arugula Salad

I just got back from an indulgent long weekend in Baltimore. Vacation eating included fried catfish and collards, crab cakes, oysters, half a bacon cheeseburger, dim sum, and shrimp and grits–washed down with a Bloody Mary, several bottles of Natty Boh and a whole lot of red wine. I had just one day to recover before today’s lunchtime tasting at The Four Seasons Restaurant for an upcoming gala. Somehow I managed to power through the afternoon despite having sampled five wines, six appetizers, six entrees and six desserts.

I worked late and still wasn’t all that hungry by the time I got home, which is good because there wasn’t much left in the cupboard. I had some arugula that had miraculously survived the two weeks since the roast chicken dinner I made for my sister. And I had plenty of apples and root vegetables from my winter CSA share.

Beet Apple Arugula Salad

Beet, Apple and Arugula Salad

  • 1 small shallot, minced
  • 1 tablespoon good quality olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon honey vinegar or apple cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon creamy Dijon mustard
  • 1 pinch salt
  • black pepper
  • 5 small beets (The Chioggias pictured above were lovely, but regular beets will taste just as good.)
  • 2 small, firm apples
  • 4 cups arugula

Combine first seven ingredients in a jar and shake vigorously. Arrange arugula in a wooden bowl. Peel and rinse beets. Using your peeler (or a mandoline if you’re fancy like that), shave the beets into the salad bowl. Quarter your apples, slice out the core, and use the peeler to shave thin slices into the bowl. Give the dressing one last shake, drizzle it over you salad, and toss to combine.

I suspect that this salad would be great with orange or grapefruit pieces that had been supremed, but the desiccated clementines on my dining table didn’t make the cut. Goat cheese or burrata would give it some heft. Whatever variation you choose, this salad would be a lovely way to start a romantic dinner for two. It also makes a fine meal for someone recovering from serious gluttony.

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