Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Beetroot and mozzarella salad


Tomato season seems very far away. But there are still ways to enjoy mozzarella salads.

Beetroot is a wonderful cold season partner for creamy buffalo mozzarella, or burrata. It is also extremely good for us.

I give thin slices of beet a quick-pickle for about half an hour, drain them, and layer them with the slices of white cheese. The acid of the vinegar is a foil for the mellow mozzarella, and the result is surprisingly addictive.

In the salad above I've added hardy sorrel leaves and the first leaves of mustard sprouts.

This is very similar to the recipe I use in the March chapter of 66 Square Feet - A Delicious Life, which is dedicated to using the thinnings of cool weather greens.

The quantities are deeply flexible, but for two:

1 medium-sized beet, peeled and quite thinly sliced
1 ball of buffalo mozzarella
Mustard or pea shoots (optional)
Good extra virgin olive oil
Salt
Pepper

For the quick pickle:

1/2 cup water
1/4 cup good vinegar (I use white wine, sherry or apple cider vinegar, depending on my mood)
1 Tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt

In a small bowl, stir the sugar and salt into the water and vinegar. When they have dissolved, add the beet slices. After about half an hour remove the slices and pat them dry.

Slice the mozzarella and alternate on a serving plate with the beet slices. If you have young green shoots, scatter them over the top. Sprinkle with a pinch of salt, a good cracking of black pepper, and drizzle with the olive oil.

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