Roasted Beet Salad nourishes and delights

From garden to table

Photo: Kristi Bissell
This garden-fresh salad is a delightful combination of flavors and textures, perfect for a springtime supper.

Our garden issue would not be complete without a salad with ingredients fresh from the garden, and this one is not only healthy but also absolutely delicious.

This impressive and hearty salad is a delightful combination of flavors and textures: Earthy beets, spicy arugula, crisp shallots, and pop-in-your-mouth rye berries all tossed in a honey mustard vinaigrette. And alongside there’s a Creamy Herbed Skyr Sauce to perfectly complement the components and bring them all together.

If you love roasted beets, you will love this salad. You are going to want to make this Roasted Beet Salad with Arugula, Rye, and Creamy Herbed Skyr Sauce because:

• It is the perfect showcase for the humble and so delicious roasted beet. The simple vinaigrette, scattering of lightly-pickled shallots, hearty rye, spicy arugula and especially the creamy skyr sauce all show up to help those beets shine brightly and be the very best they can be.

• It is a meal in and of itself. The addition of the whole grain rye berries really makes this salad nourishing and super satisfying.

• It’s gorgeous and impressive. Those jewel-like beets tucked between leafy greens with a dollop of creamy herb-studded sauce alongside? So lovely.

• Beets are the star of the show here. Roasting them brings out their sweet, earthy flavor while keeping the texture pleasantly firm. Feel free to use golden beets rather than red if you prefer.

• Rye berries are incredibly nutritious and add a hearty, whole grain component to the salad. Want to learn more about rye, including the benefits of adding rye to your diet? Check out this post, “The Essential Guide to Cooking and Baking with Rye” on my blog true-north-kitchen.com for a concise overview of this often overlooked grain. Rye berries are often available in the bulk section of organic grocery stores. If you can’t find rye berries, no problem! Choose wheat berries, pearl barley, or farro instead. Just be sure to vary the cooking time accordingly.

Expert tips

• Dress each component of the salad separately and then combine them. This gives the salad the best overall flavor and ensures that each ingredient gets a little hit of vinaigrette and salt and pepper.

• Artfully arrange the beets rather than tossing them in the salad. Once red beets come into contact with just about anything else, they leave a trail of red. To keep your salad looking clean and beautiful, simply nestle the beet slices into the already dressed rye berries and greens. You will get a much prettier final result.

• Don’t skip the Creamy Herbed Skyr Sauce! It truly makes the salad.

 

FAQs

Can I make this salad ahead of time?

The beets, rye berries, vinaigrette, and the Creamy Herbed Skyr Sauce can all be made up to a couple of days ahead of time. Simply wait to assemble everything until just before you are ready to serve.

Can I substitute Greek yogurt for the skyr in the Creamy Herbed Skyr Sauce?

Yes.

Can I make this recipe vegan?

Absolutely. Substitute maple syrup or agave nectar for the honey and use a plant-based yogurt in the skyr sauce. Omit the milk in the skyr sauce as well.

 

Roasted Beet Salad with Arugula, Rye, and Creamy Herbed Skyr Sauce

INGREDIENTS

½ cup rye berries rinsed

Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper

1 bunch beets, about 3 medium

2 tbsps. white balsamic vinegar

2 small shallots cut into thin rings

1 tsp. honey

4-6 cups baby arugula

½ tsp. Dijon mustard

3 tbsps. extra-virgin olive oil plus more for drizzling on beets

Creamy Herbed Skyr Sauce for serving

 

INSTRUCTIONS

1. Bring a medium-sized saucepan of water to a boil. Add rye berries and a pinch of salt. Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Cook until grains are pleasantly tender but still have a little bite to them, about 45-60 minutes. Drain and set aside.

2. Meanwhile, roast the beets: Preheat the oven to 400. Wash and trim beets. Rub with olive oil and place inside a tightly sealed foil pouch. Roast until the beets are tender, about 45-60 minutes. The time will depend on the size of your beets. Open the foil pouch and set aside to cool. Once the beets are cool enough to handle, use a paper towel to help remove the skins from the beets. They should slide off quite easily. Slice the beets into circles or wedges.

3. Cover the shallots with vinegar and set aside for 10 minutes. Whisk in honey, mustard, and olive oil. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

4. Assemble the salad: Drizzle the beet slices with 1 tsp. of vinaigrette. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Combine 1 cup of the rye berries and the remaining vinaigrette in a large bowl (you may have some rye berries left over). Toss to coat and season with salt and pepper. Add the arugula to the bowl. Toss and season to taste one last time. Transfer the dressed arugula and rye to a serving platter. Artfully nestle the beet slices in the salad. Place a large dollop of Creamy Herbed Skyr Sauce on the platter. Serve.

 

Creamy Herbed Skyr Sauce

INGREDIENTS

1 garlic clove minced

1 cup plain whole milk skyr or Greek yogurt

2 tbsps. whole milk

½ tsp. ground cumin

1 tsp. cayenne pepper

3 tbsps. chopped dill

3 tbsps. chopped chives

1 tsp. extra-virgin olive oil

Coarse salt

 

INSTRUCTIONS

1. Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl.  Season with salt to taste. Cover and store in the refrigerator until you are ready to use, preferably at least an hour or so to allow the flavors to marry.

2. The sauce can be refrigerated and stored for up to three days.

 

NOTES

• For best results, seek out a full fat skyr or greek yogurt.

• If you want a thicker sauce, omit or decrease the amount of milk.

• Feel free to vary the fresh herbs in this recipe! Chives and dill are very nice, especially for spring and early summer, but basil, cilantro, tarragon, and/or parsley will work, too.

 

This article originally appeared in the May 27, 2022, issue of The Norwegian American. To subscribe, visit SUBSCRIBE or call us at (206) 784-4617.

Kristi Bissell

Kristi Bissell is the founder of True North Kitchen, a Nordic food blog designed for the American home cook. She enjoys creating recipes that celebrate her Scandinavian heritage and that approach traditional Nordic ingredients in a modern, fresh and approachable way. Kristi is a native of Minneapolis and currently resides in Omaha, Neb. When she’s not cooking and baking in her cozy kitchen, Kristi teaches private and corporate yoga classes and leads Scandinavian cooking and baking workshops. For more information, visit her blog, www.true-north-kitchen.com.

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