Introduction: Moroccan Beet Salad
Marinated beets with lemon juice, garlic, and cumin.
Step 1: Ingredients & Roasting
A friend served this beet salad at his Christmas party, then sent us home with the recipe. This is apparently a popular dish among Moroccan Jews. I've included the ingredient list here so you can get the basic ratio, which I of course muddle to my taste in preparation.
1 pound beets
1 lemon, juiced
1 clove garlic, minced/grated
1 teaspoon ground cumin
salt/pepper to taste
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
handful fresh parsley, chopped
Wash your beets, chopping the greens off if they're still attached, and put the still-wet roots in a large roasting pan. Cover it with foil, and drop it into a 375F oven for shortly under an hour.
While the beets are baking you can assemble the marinade, prepare other food items, or put up a new Instructable
Step 2: Test and Cool
After about 45 minutes (or when the beets start smelling 'done') test them by stabbing the biggest beet with a thin-bladed knife. You can stab directly through the foil to avoid removing the foil and letting all the steam out.
When the knife goes through smoothly, you're done; remove the pan and allow the beets to cool.
Step 3: Peel and Slice
After roasting and cooling, the beet skins should peel off quite easily.
Slice the beets into ~1/4 inch thick rounds. If the beets are large, cut them in half longitudinally before slicing for more manageable pieces. Store them in a lidded glass container, as they're likely to permanently stain a plastic bowl.
Step 4: Marinade
Since I was making at least 3x the recipe, this was modified slightly.
The lemons were small, so I used four, yielding ~1/2 cup juice. I grated the garlic for extra-strong flavor, and used a good 5-6 big cloves; if you've seen any of my other recipes this is par for the course. I added 3 teaspoons cumin, tasted and realized it was hiding behind the other flavors, and added another teaspoon for good measure. 3/4 cup of olive oil seemed about right, and I added a pinch of salt and a vigorous amount of pepper.
Whisk everything together to make a nice creamy-looking emulsion, then give it a final tasting and modify as necessary.
Step 5: Combine and Marinate
Dump your marinade over the beets, give everything a stir, and store them in the refrigerator to marinate. Stir if you think about it.
The longer the beets marinate, the better they taste. They were fine after an hour or two, good the next morning, and fantastic the next evening. After about 24-36 hours the flavor will have fully permeated the beets (time will depend on the thickness of your slices), so planning ahead is good.
Step 6: Serve
After leaving them to marinate as long as possible, serve your beets cold or at room temperature, and covered with shredded fresh parsley. Use a fork or slotted spoon to avoid transferring an excess of marinade.
Unsurprisingly, these beets store very well. Make extra, and you'll have plenty to fish out of the fridge for a cold snack over the next week.
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