Let’s call it serendipity.
I had no sooner opened the CSA box than a bunch of dark red Early Wonder Tall Top Beets popped out. The fridge in the garage was fragrant with green garlic and the Kentucky Colonel spearmint was shooting up in the garden. Always there are lemons in the bowl.
They came together in this unexpectedly delicious spring salad. As Monika Ahlberg said, “Sometimes it’s easy for thoughts to take wing.”
Enough talking. Here’s the recipe:
Spring Beet Salad with Green Garlic, Spearmint and Lemon
Serves 4 as a side salad, or 2 more generously
1 large bunch baby beets (Chioggia, Early Wonder, or other small beets, 1-1/2 to 2 inches in diameter)
2 tablespooons green garlic, white parts only, finely chopped
3 tablespoons lemon juice
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1-1/2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons fresh mint, chopped
1. Chop off the tops and tails of the beets, leaving one inch of stem. Scrub well to remove any dirt. Bring 2 to 3 inches of water to boil in the bottom of a steamer. Place the beets in the top part of the steamer and cover. Reduce heat to medium low and steam for 20 to 30 minutes, or until they can be easily pierced with a fork. Remove from the heat and let cool slightly.
2. When the beets are cool enough to handle, slip off the outer skins and cut them into thin slices. Arrange on a plate in concentric rings or any other pleasing pattern.
3. Combine the chopped green garlic, lemon juice, salt and pepper in a small bowl. Let the ingredients sit for about 5 minutes. Whisk in the olive oil. Drizzle the dressing over the beets. Sprinkle chopped fresh mint over them and serve.