26 May 2009

Beet and Cucmber salad

This is pretty good, I think, even if I do say so myself. (OK, not earth-shakingly original, but I happen to have a lot of beets in our kitchen garden, so this is one thing I came up with to do with them). You could make this with canned shredded or sliced beets, but these aren't nearly as good as fresh ones. I made this multiplied by about four for a fairly large group and it worked fine.

  • 2 beets, cooked to just tender, cooled till you can handle them, then peeled, and diced coarsely into elongated pieces (beet skins just slide off; takes about 20 to 25 min. to cook them, or a little less if they're small. Cook them whole, with tops just torn off and root at bottom left on, so as not to loose too much of the juices to the water; discard the inedible parts, obviously).
  • 1/4 sweet onion, sliced thin, and then the slices quartered to give "salad shreds"
  • 1 cucumber, peeled, cut in half, seeded, and sliced thin but not too thin.
  • A little olive oil
  • About 1/4 cup wine or rice vinegar, in which a couple of cloves of minced garlic have been heated in a glass measuring cup (cover with paper towel), in a microwave to not quite boiling, then left to cool to just warm or room temp.
  • A few teaspoons of sugar
  • salt

Place cooled beets in a bowl, sprinkle fairly generously with olive oil and some of the garlic vinegar.
Put onions and sliced cucumbers in a wire colander over another bowl, salt well and mix gently, let stand 30 min., discard liquid that drips out. Put cucumbers in bowl, add sugar and a little more vinegar, stir gently.
Chill an hour or so, then put cucumbers in with beets and stir, just before serving (the beets will dye everything red pretty quickly)

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