Beet The Heat With This Tasty Salad!
Since I didn’t want to go yet another week without posting a recipe, I had to come up with something I could make utilizing the pressure cooker in this crazy heat wave we have been having, so I came up with this tomato beet salad with pickled onions, goat cheese and candied pecans.
My wife is not a huge fan of beets (in other words, she doesn’t like them), but if I dress them up with enough accoutrements, such as pickled onions, tomatoes and goat cheese, she can tolerate them.
By doing the cooking part at 8 AM, when it was a mere 80 degrees in our apartment, by the time dinner time came around the cooked components were cooled and it was just a matter of assembling the salad.
I did all the cooking in the instant pot. Even though the onions aren’t cooked under pressure, I used the Instant Pot so I only had to dirty one pot. So I’m happy, the wife’s happy, it’s a win-win!
I used seven smallish beets which came out to about 1-1/4 pounds. Trim the leaves off, leaving about 1/2 inch of the stem attached. Doing this will keep the beets from bleeding while cooking and will help to keep your kitchen from ending up looking like a venue which recently played host to the Red Wedding.
Pour 1-1/2 cups water into the pot and insert the steam tray. I could have used the tray that came with the instant pot, but opted to use the “daisy” style tray that most of us have.
Place the beets in the tray, lock the cover on the pot and set the time for 20 minutes. As I said, these beets were on the smaller side, if your beets are larger, you may have to add 4-5 minutes.
While the beets are cooking, you can get the red onion ready to go. I used the second-thinnest setting and sliced them on my mandoline, which I refer to as “The Widowmaker”, after a treacherous trip to the ER in which my thumb was spewing a stream of blood reminiscent of a Monty Python sketch. Which leads me to caution you to always use the safety guard, kids, or at the very least, a kevlar glove!
When the time is up for the beets, let the pressure come down on its own.
Carefully remove the beets to a plastic cutting board and let them cool for a few minutes while you work on the pickled onions.
Rinse out the inner pot of the cooker, and replace.
Pour 1 cup cider vinegar, or a mixture of vinegars. I used mostly cider vinegar, but added a little sherry vinegar because I didn’t have a full cup of cider vinegar left. Also add 1 cup of water, 1/2 teaspoon of salt and 2 teaspoons of pickling spice. Next, add 2 tablespoons of sugar. Set the pressure cooker to sauté mode on the high setting and bring to a boil, stirring often until the sugar and salt are dissolved.
Turn off cooker and let cool for about 2 minutes.
Strain the liquid through a strainer into a bowl to remove the pickling spices, Add the sliced onions to the bowl and let them sit until cooled, about ten minutes or so.
Transfer the onions and liquid to a jar or other container and refrigerate. I did this in the morning, so they had all day to steep. If you plan on doing this later in the day, refrigerate them for a minimum of 30 minutes.
Now that the beets are cooled, you can easily rub the skins off with a paper towel. Put in a container and refrigerate until ready to use. I like to wait until assembling the salad to cut them into pieces.
Now, let’s assemble this thing.
Take a pint of halved heirloom cherry tomatoes, all one color or mixed, (regular cherry tomatoes will do as well) and place in a bowl.
Cut the beets into quarters (if larger, cut int 6-8 pieces). Add these in with the tomatoes.
Take about half of the pickled onions out of the jar with a fork and add to the other vegetables.
Pour about 4 tablespoons of the onion liquid and two tablespoons olive oil into the salad and gently mix together.
Crumble a 4 ounce package of goat cheese and a few ounces of candied pecans (pecans are optional).
Gently toss once more and serve on plates or in bowls. Add salt and pepper to taste.
I would recommend serving on top of greens such as butter lettuce, which I would have done if I had remembered to buy some (c’mon Michael), but it was still delicious, but not quite as pretty.
|Pressure Cooker Tomato Beet Salad|| |
- 7-8 beets (about 1-1/4 to 1-1/2 pounds), leaves trimmed with ½" of stems left on top
- 1 medium red onion, thinly sliced
- 1 4-ounce package goat cheese
- 1 cup apple cider vinegar (can use a mixture of apple cider vinegar and sherry vinegar)
- 1 cup water
- 2 teaspoons pickling spice
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 pint heirloom cherry tomatoes (regular will work), halved
- 2 ounces of pre-made candied pecans (available at most markets, optional)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- Salt & Pepper to taste
- Place steam tray in pressure cooker with 1-1/2 cups water.
- Add beets to steam tray
- Lock cover on pressure cooker and set time for 20 minutes at high pressure
- When time is up, remove beets to a plastic cutting board and let them cool
- Rinse inner pot of pressure cooker and replace
- To pressure cooker pot, add the vinegar, water, sugar, pickling spice and ½ teaspoon salt
- Set sauté setting on pressure cooker to high
- Bring to a boil, stirring often until sugar and salt are dissolved
- Turn off PC and let liquid cool for 2 minutes
- Strain liquid into a bowl
- Add onions to liquid, tossing to make sure all onion is coated
- Let set for about 10 minutes
- Transfer to a jar and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes, and up to overnight
- Rub the beets with paper towel to remove skins, and break off stems and tips
- Place beets in a container and refrigerate until you assemble the salad
- When you are ready to put the salad together, cut the beets into 4-8 chunks each, depending on how large your beets are and put them in a serving bowl
- Add the halved tomatoes in with the beets
- Add the onions to the tomatoes and beets (I used about half of the onions, you can save the rest for other uses)
- Add in four tablespoons of the onion pickling liquid and 2 tablespoons of olive oil
- Toss gently, and add salt and pepper to taste
- Crumble the goat cheese on top and toss on the candied pecans
- Lightly toss cheese and pecans into the salad
- Serve on greens such as butter lettuce