Please Pass the Recipe

from one generation to the next

Baby Beets with Yoghurt Dressing

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My Dad always grew a row of beetroot in front of the rampant staked tomatoes in his summer vegetable patch. To maximize yield, they were never pulled until they were about the size of a baseball. Mum would simply boil the beets whole, slip off their skins then cut them into thin rounds. She’d dress the beetroot slices with a sprinkle of sugar before dampening them with malt vinegar, producing a superior version of Aussie canned beetroot slices.

This was at a time when salad for dinner meant shredded iceberg lettuce leaves, slices of tomato and peeled cucumber, slices of the above mentioned beetroot, maybe half a boiled egg, a few slices of tasty cheese and cold cuts of meat all arranged on your dinner plate. Mayonnaise made with condensed milk would be passed separately.

Thankfully in Australia, salad has evolved. Now a dish predominantly made with either raw or cooked vegetables it can be eaten as a complete meal or as an accompaniment. Few ingredients are exempt from doing salad duty. A good salad is seasoned and dressed with complementary flavours to enhance the overall flavour.

A bunch of baby beets (their were 9 in my bunch)
2 tablespoons Greek yoghurt
Zest of 1/2 orange
1 clove garlic
1 teaspoon sea salt
2 tablespoons chopped dill

1 Trim the leaves off the beets leaving a good 8cm of the stem. If the leaves are young and fresh keep them to make a leafy salad.
2 Put the beets in a saucepan, cover with cold water, bring to the boil put the lid on the pot, then reduce the heat and simmer until done. Test the largest beet by piercing it with a sharp knife.
3 Drain and cool slightly.
4 Mince the garlic to a paste with the sea salt.
5 Combine the garlic paste, yoghurt, orange zest and dill.
6 Slip the skins off the beets. If you pull the stems off first, the rest of the skin should come off easily.
7 Cut each beet into thin wedges and toss in the yoghurt dressing.
Serves 6 as an accompaniment.

About ladyredspecs

I live in sunny Brisbane, Australia. My love of good food drives me as a cook, a reader, a traveller, an artist and but mostly as an eater. I cooked professionally for many years but have no formal training. Simply guided by a love of eating good food, respect for ingredients and an abhorrence of artificial additives, I cook instinctively applying the technical know how acquired by experience. I hope you enjoy what I share Sandra AKA ladyredspecs

24 comments on “Baby Beets with Yoghurt Dressing

  1. Saskia (1=2)
    March 10, 2014

    Yay. I’m looking at the remnants of a recent organic veggie box purchase. 6 large beets! That’s lunch sorted. Orange and yogurt dressing sound beautiful. Lovely photo – I could just about tuck my fork directly into the computer screen. Funny, but we had the salad you described last week at my mother-in-law’s house; shredded iceberg and all. It was such a blast from the past, but actually rather nice!

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      March 10, 2014

      Thanks, Enjoy the beets Saskia. My own 1=2 is to purée leftover salad into a dip!

      Like

      • Saskia (1=2)
        March 10, 2014

        I do the same, with ground macadamias. Yummo!

        Like

  2. Fig & Quince
    February 19, 2014

    I remember that salad too here in the U.S. before arugula and the like made its way to the market. ha ha. I love beets and I love yogurt and this dish is close to home and to my taste buds and I can say I truly love the looks of it and the recipe sounds great!

    Like

  3. Aneela Mirchandani
    February 18, 2014

    Your childhood salad sounds wonderful too. Mayonnaise made with condensed milk…care to share that one? So intriguing. Also your yogurt dressing sounds yummy.

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      February 18, 2014

      Hah, I think the condensed milk mayo is a depression recipe! Nestlé used to have the recipe printed on the condensed milk can label. I don’t have my Mum’s formula but I imagine she made it exactly as the recipe stated. To the can of condensed milk add 2 teaspoons dry mustard powder, 1 cup vinegar (nothing fancy, plain malt vinegar) and salt. I still love the flavour of this “mayo”, but I much prefer the yoghurt dressing on the beets!

      Like

  4. laurasmess
    February 14, 2014

    Hahaa, I used to eat that EXACT same Aussie salad plate as a kid! Such a funny thing… the half hardboiled egg, perhaps some shredded cheddar alongside the vegetables! At least you had home-cured beets (though I have to admit that I loved the canned stuff). This salad looks gorgeous. Love that header shot, the vibrant herbs against the deep purple is beautiful! x

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      February 14, 2014

      Thank goodness for the influence of the whole world’s cultures on our food or else we still might be eating that plain composed salad! Beetroot is beautiful to photograph!

      Like

  5. Fae's Twist & Tango
    February 13, 2014

    – I just noticed that I had missed so many of your posts, because it never showed in my ‘Reader’. I’ve said this before, and I say it again, you have a top class online magazine here, and one of my most favorite. I am going back to the posts you had on India and Indian food, as they really intrigued me.
    – Red beetroots baked with stones in fire pits are snacks in Iran. Japanese do that with red beetroots and sweet potatoes/yams for snacks too. Of course these red beetroots are used for salads as well. This recipe is so easy and yet so delicious and satisfying.

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      February 13, 2014

      WP does seem to mess around with settings a bit, I too have had people drop out of my reader, glad you’re back!! Thanks for the nice compliments Fae, I’m just doing my thing!

      Like

  6. marymtf
    February 13, 2014

    Love beetroot. This recipe sounds yummy.

    Like

  7. Shanna Koenigsdorf Ward
    February 12, 2014

    Yes, yes, yes, I will make this. Beets and Greek yogurt are two of my Great (food) Loves. 🙂 Lovely herbal touch, too. Lovely memory about your folks. Your mom is so smart the boil the beet and slip those skins right off. Best, Shanna

    Like

  8. Karen
    February 12, 2014

    The yogurt dressing gives the beets a great color as well as tasting good, I’m sure.

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      February 12, 2014

      Hi Karen, this a delicious way to serve beets, the bonus is how pretty they look!

      Like

  9. trixpin
    February 12, 2014

    Amazing colour! Never thought of dressing beetroots like this.

    Like

  10. chef mimi
    February 12, 2014

    So perfect.

    Like

  11. Transplanted Cook
    February 11, 2014

    A very Greek way of preparing a beet salad! I love it.

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      February 12, 2014

      Thanks, grated raw beets with the same dressing are also wonderful. BTW I talked to my Greek friend about rice V meat filled dolmades. He said his Mum called rice filled dolmades Lebanese!

      Like

  12. Leah
    February 11, 2014

    Yum, one of my favourite vegetables to have as a salad 🙂

    Like

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This entry was posted on February 11, 2014 by in Food, Gluten Free, Light Savoury Dishes, Side Dishes & Salads and tagged , , , , , .
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