I’m all about edible flowers this week, since Marx Foods, gourmet food supplier based out of Seattle, is holding a contest over on their Instagram account. I’m one of the competitors (don’t forget to “like” my photo here to cast your vote). Remember that creamy, knock-your-pants-off goat milk ricotta I made last week? Well, that goat ricotta also made it into my Marx Foods Edible Flowers Photography Challenge post, because I basically used any excuse I could to put it on anything, including all over my face and hands. To make this salad, I roasted some beets, I tossed some spinach and arugula in a light lemon & olive oil dressing and added the nasturtium flowers that Marx Foods sent me to make this gorgeous beet, ricotta & nasturtium salad. The ricotta tempered the bitter bite of the nasturtiums, keeping their strong flavor from completely overwhelming the salad.
I know you don’t win friends with salad, but I have to say that this one has to be a good icebreaker.
Speaking of salads, have you heard of Whole30? It’s basically a 30-day clean eating program. Next week I’ll be blogging recipes and stories about my experience, along with my reasons for trying the program. Right now I’m on Day 2, and all I can say is that I have this constant dull hunger that feels kind of like I just broke up with someone (that someone is called Carbs, and he left me, just like his good friend Dairy, by the way). In other words, seeing these photos of that beautiful ricotta gives me a serious case of the sads. I think I’m going to have to lay face down and cry a little (which would actually be the second time I’ve cried today over not being able to eat with the reckless abandon that I normally do).
Enough of my woes. Here’s the recipe for this tasty salad:
- For the dressing:
- ¼ cup olive oil
- juice of ½ lemon (approximately 2 tablespoons)
- 1 shallot, finely minced
- 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
- salt and pepper, to taste
- For the salad:
- 3 beets, washed thoroughly
- ½ cup ricotta (preferably goat milk)
- 2 cups lightly packed spinach
- 2 cups lightly packed arugula
- 12 edible nasturtium flowers (optional), available at MarxFoods.com
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Rub beets with olive oil and wrap in foil packets. Place packet on a baking sheet and bake for around 45 minutes to 1 hour.
- Remove baking sheet from oven but leave beets in foil packets until cool.
- Using a small knife, carefully peel tough skins off of the beets and slice into ½ inch wedges.
- While the beets are roasting, combine all of the dressing ingredients except for the olive oil in a medium-sized bowl. Slowly whisk in the olive oil until well blended (dressing should look opaque).
- After beets have cooled and are sliced, toss arugula and spinach in a large salad bowl with the dressing. Divide greens onto 4 plates, then divide beet wedges among each plate.
- Using a teaspoon, dab spoonfuls of ricotta on salad. Sprinkle with nasturtium petals (if using). Serve immediately.