Having been to Europe for the Easter holidays we were all craving some Mediterranean food this weekend.
Despite the lack of sunshine, a trip to the bustling Spanish tapas restaurant 'Brindisa' in Borough Market put a smile back on our faces, as we indulged in tortilla, garlic prawns, padron peppers and this simple, yet utterly delicious salad.
As you may have seen from an earlier post, I tend to make this salad with goat’s cheese, and blue cheese rarely graces my shopping basket. But the Stilton gave it an interesting extra creamy, sharp tangy kick.
Blue cheeses can seem a little daunting, as we think of them as being ‘moldy’, but they contain penicillium roqueforti and P. glaucum probiotics that can enhance the health of your digestive tract. In fact, both P. roqueforti and P. glaucum have natural antibacterial properties and have the ability put gut pathogens in their place.
So with the combination of beneficial bacteria and fibre in the beetroots, walnuts and salad leaves, this dish can make for a very happy palate and gut!
Ingredients (serves 4):
3 golden beetroot, ends trimmed and washed
3 purple beetroots, ends trimmed and washed
1 cup/100g walnuts
½ tablespoon of brown sugar
¼ tsp of sea salt
1 tbsp olive oil
5 cups of mixed salad leaves
200g stilton (or any type of blue cheese), coarsely crumbled
¼ cup/60 ml of olive oil
1.5 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar
1 tsp of Dijon mustard
1 tsp of raw honey
Pinch of sea salt and freshly ground pepper
Preheat oven to 180C. Wrap the beetroots in foil and place in a roasting pan. Bake in the oven for 30-40 minutes (or until tender). Remove from oven and set aside to cool. Peel each beetroot and set aside (this can be done on the day or two days in advance if preferred)
Whilst the beetroot are cooking, line an oven tray with baking paper. Combine the walnuts, sugar, salt and 1 tablespoon of the oil in a small bowl. Spread the walnuts over the lined tray. Bake in oven for 5-7 minutes (or until walnuts are toasted and caramelised). Remove from oven and set aside to cool.
Place the balsamic vinegar, mustard, honey and remaining oil in a jar and shake until well combined. Taste and season with salt and pepper.
Arrange the mixed leaves in a large bowl. Top with beetroot, walnuts and blue cheese. Drizzle with dressing and gently toss to combine. Divide evenly among each plate. Serve immediately.