I realize that this post title is perhaps just a little bit early, but if you live in the Northern Hemisphere and you’re like me, you’ve already started to dig into all those lovely vegetables you’ll be eating all winter–carrots, squash, potatoes, brussels sprouts, turnips, and beets. There’s not much variation on “fresh” and local vegetables during the winter unless you’ve got your hands on hot-house tomatoes and, as lovely as these vegetables may seem now, by January or February, you’re going to need some pick me up recipes to keep you eating healthy and happy all winter long.
So, tonight I broke out the first of my favourite winter recipes: the Winter Market Salad! Nicole and I discovered this recipe last year when we had so many beets we didn’t know what to do with them, and this soon became Nicole’s favourite winter pot-luck recipe. It’s quick and simple to assemble, it lasts for days, and it lets you eat raw veggies during the winter. While the original recipe is very good, we made some super basic changes (out of laziness and a lack of some ingredients) and so I thought I’d share them both for you. Here’s the recipe:
- 1 large beet, peeled and julienned
- 1 carrot, peeled and shredded
- 1 small apple (I used Liberty this time, although the original recipe suggests MacIntosh. We’ve also used Gala’s and enjoyed it though) peeled, cored, and cubed
- (raisins are optional)
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar or white wine vinegar
- 1 tsp prepared yellow mustard
- 1 tsp grainy Dijon mustard (we both really like grainy Dijon, so we generally put a little more in)
- 1 tblsp liquid honey (easier to mix if either the honey is warmed, or the rest of the dressing ingredients are at room temperature)
- freshly ground salt and pepper to taste.
Assemble all the ingredients for the dressing together in a screw top jar. Seal, and shake the ingredients together to blend the dressing.
Assemble the julienned beets, carrots (and raisins?) in a bowl, pour the dressing mixture over top of the salad ingredients, and mix.
If you have time, this salad is best when it’s refrigerated for an hour or so, just to let the dressing flavours mix with the beets and carrots. So if you have the time, stick this salad in the fridge, go on to making the rest of the meal, and add the apples at the end (unless you don’t care if you have neon pink apples). If you are starving, or just crunched for time, add the apples at this point and have at ‘er.
While it may not look like much in terms of beauty, this salad definitely makes up for looks in terms of taste and other qualities of awesomeness. There are just so many things I love about this salad: I love the colour in my bowl or on my plate in the middle of winter, I love the crunch of the carrots, beets, and apples, I love the tang of the vinegar and mustard that’s countered with the sweetness of the honey, I love that half of the ingredients for the whole salad can be grown right in my back yard (I wish I owned an olive tree!), and most of all, I love the fact that I almost always have all these ingredients in the house during the winter. So on the days when I’ve realized I should have actually bought groceries two days ago and didn’t, I can still have supper.
So what about you? What’s your favourite winter vegetable beet recipe? (Especially, do you have anything wonderful that you can do with brussels sprouts? If so, don’t hold out on me any further!)