The Ardent Epicure

An Ode to the Pleasures of Food

Roasted Golden Beets with Lemon and
 Mint Cream Sauce

This is another quick and easy side that I love the basic simple flavors of. By
simply dressing our roasted beets with a drizzle of hazelnut oil then a sprinkling
 of coarsely ground salt and pepper we let the natural flavors shine.

The lemon and mint yogurt sauce makes a lovely accompaniment to our
roasted beets, or would hold up well on it's own as a veggie dip. Perhaps
even a nice light dressing by adding a bit of oil and upping the fresh
lemon a bit. Either way both would be a welcome guest at a holiday
 table or fall get together.

These lovely organic beets are of the golden variety and although many may find
them, along with several other rood vegetables to be unattractive, I find them
to be glorious! I do find the red beets to be attractive as well, but the golden
beet has my vote. The raw beet has such a perfect blend of hues the
yellows, oranges and even fall is that!

Did you know that these beautiful bushy greens are also edible? Well if not I can
assure you they indeed are. They in fact belong to the same family as chard, and
 can be prepared in any way their cousins can. So if you are to get your hands on
 young beet greens they are lovely in a raw state, if the leaves are more mature
 along with the stems, a stir fry may fit the bill. So if you had only though that
the root portion was edible, take another look at the beet as a
 "stem to root" food source.

To highlight these beauties I chose the simplest of seasonings...but of coarse they
are a bit special :) The salt is a combination of pink and white sea salts, along
with dried edible flowers. We also have two pepper varieties.

The first of our peppers being Penja Pepper or "Pepper from Paradice".This
unique white peppercorn has larger than typical berries. The flavor is quite
 complex, bold yet mildly spicy. It has a silky feel with woodsy undertones,
 along with a delicate uplifting aroma...beautiful by any standards.

Our second pepper it the Tellicherry, I have featured this pepper before and
 am re-introducing it. This variety of peppercorn is said by many to be
 the finest in the world. They are ripened for longer than most black
 peppercorn varieties, lending them a luscious fruity aroma and mouth
 feel. As I have featured this pepper recently, I will not go on and on,
but if you have the opportunity to get your hands on either
 or both...shall I just say...Do :)

What you will need:
For the lemon mint cream
5 ounces plain Greek yogurt
1 1/2 - 2 tablespoons fresh mint, finely chopped
1/2 large lemon, juiced
1/2 tablespoon lemon zest
* Note: make sauce ahead by a couple of
hours to allow for a melding of flavors

For the roasted beets
4 medium to large golden beets
2 tablespoons hazelnut  oil, plus
 more for drizzle
Freshly ground sea salt and pepper
(I used sea salt with dried flowers
along with Penja and Tellicherry
 peppers freshly ground)

Let's get cooking:
For the lemon mint cream
Start by preparing your lemon mint sauce. First finely chop your mint, and
place in a mini food processor to mince. If using a food processor add
 yogurt, lemon and zest until combined. If using a bowl, whisk until
 fully incorporated and creamy. Refrigerate for a few hours,
removing 10 minutes before needed.

For the roasted beets
Place cleaned and trimmed beets in foil, drizzle with olive oil and place on a
baking sheet in a pre-heated oven at 375°F. Roast covered in foil turning beets half way
for about 1-1 1/2 hours depending on beet size. (baby or mini beets can be as little as
 25 minutes while very large beets can be up to 1 1/2 hours). Beets are done when
they are pierced with a fork or knife at the top and are tender.

Allow beets to cool to the touch after removing from oven, then peel. Slice
each beet into aprox 1/4 inch slices or as desired. Drizzle with a bit of oil
then sprinkle on salt and pepper. Serving lemon mint cream on the
side, or thin a bit with oil and lemon and drizzle.
Serves 4

And for a fun side note, I had a visit from the mysterious The Fairy Hobmother,
she is said to be spreading gifts to those who make a wish. I myself have
been graced by such a gift, in the form of a $100 dollar Amazon gift card.
Who doesn't want such a treat during the holiday Season!

She is often seen here at Appliances Online, where she watches over
 a luxurious line of  household appliances and more.

The story goes, that if you leave a comment while making a wish, you
may receive a visit of your vary own. So don't forget to make a wish ;)

Alisha ~ Magic of Spice

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