Gourmet beetroot and goats cheese stackers.
Beetroot is a vegetable which has come in to culinary fashion lately. Maybe its because of the deep earthy flavours, or maybe its because of its zingy bright colours – this seasonal vegetable really seems to have something going for it lately. So I decided to make it into a dish to impress and served it up for a friend’s dinner party.
PREP TIME: 5 minutes COOK TIME: 25 minutes
DIFFICULTY: Easy SERVES: 2
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tsp pepper
- 1 tsp chopped rosemary
- 2 medium beetroots (each about the size of a tennis ball)
- 150g goats cheese (preferably about the same/ slightly smaller width as your beetroots)
- a handful of crushed walnuts
For the balsamic reduction:
- 150ml balsamic vinegar
- 1 clove of garlic
- 1 tbsp brown sugar
- 1 tsp chopped rosemary
TIP: This dish looks so much more professional when the puree is piped around the plate. If you don’t have a piping bag handy, you can use a plastic sandwich bag, or a clean plastic carrier bag with a small hole cut out of the corner to give the same, carefully “splodged” look.
- Preheat over to 200°C/fan 180°C/ Gas 6.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine the olive oil, pepper and rosemary.
- Scrub the beets and slice each beet into 5 even pieces, and toss in the oil. Place each slice flat on a baking sheet and bake for 30 minutes.
- Meanwhile, slice your goats cheese into 5 even rounds, and make your balsamic reduction by placing all the balsamic reduction ingredients in a saucepan. Simmer over a low heat for approximately 15 minutes, stirring regularly. Remove from the heat and set aside until you are dressing your plate.
- Bring a pan of water to the boil to blanch your mange tout later.
- Once the beetroot is softened, remove from the oven and begin making your stacks on the baking sheet. Each stack should begin with a slice of beetroot (the largest on the bottom), and then alternate with two slices of goats cheese and two more pieces of beetroot, giving it a stripey appearence. You will have one piece of goats cheese and 4 end pieces of beetroot left. Pop these into a blender with half the wallnuts and a table spoon of water. Place this mix into your piping bag.
- Caerfully remove your stacks from the oven, and place each one on a plate. Throw your mangetout pods into the boiling water. As these blanche, quickly dress your plates, by spooning a little balsamic glaze around each plate, piping dots of puree around the stack, and by scattering your walnuts.
- Drain your mangetout, and place a few on each plate, to give some serious colour contrast, and you’re ready to serve.