Roasted Beet Salad w/ Almond Feta
Tomorrow is December 1st. I can’t wait. I am especially excited for Christmas this year, but I am more excited for the whole month of December (minus the first week). As I write this, it is nine days, three hours, and fourteen minutes until I land in Winnipeg. I have never looked forward to something more in my life. I’ll get greeted by my amazing partner at the airport, I’ll have cocktails with my mom, I’ll bake with my brother and soon to be sister in law, my dad will come home for good, and I’ll get up to all the fun festive activities with my dear friends. I’ve never needed to be around my friends and family more than I do right now.
I’ll update you on my life in a minute, but first, this salad! Despite the fact that I made this in the summer (and never got around to posting it), it’s the perfect December salad. I won’t go into it much, because frankly, I’d rather write about my problems. But I will give you a little disclaimer: the almond cheese is magical. You can use it in Greek salads, pasta dishes, or even just spread out on crackers. I’ll sometimes make it and stir in different herbs before baking it to get different ‘cheese’ flavours.
Now, back to my life. It’s been hard. In fact, it’s been really hard. I’m having a really hard time in school, not because I can’t do it but because I don’t want to do it. This week, the only time I have left my bed is to go to class. I am not lying. Countless hours of Christmas movies and Friends have been watched and, I can guarantee you, I have taken every single Buzzfeed quiz ever made. My wonderful partner has been so thoughtful and supportive during this time, as has my family. I honestly do not know where I would be without them, which is why I am in desperate need of some quality time at home with them.
Moving to a new city is hard. Then add a new school. Then you might as well throw some mental illness into that mixture, cause why not?
I’ve been wanting to write a blog post for ages and get back into creating recipes. But the reality is, I’m just barely floating my head above water right now. Getting dressed is exhausting. Interacting with anyone but my partner and a few close family members is really hard.
I have no inspiration to write anything.
I used to paint when I was younger and I would go through periods like this. My mom always told me to work through them. The only way to keep going is, well, to keep going.
So here I am. Floating along, just barely. But I’ll keep going. Counting down those nine days.
- 2 cups almond, preferably soaked for a few hours
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1/4 cup lemon juice
- 2-3 tbsp water
- 3 cloves of garlic
- 1 tsp salt
- 3 beets
- 2 tsp olive oil
- 4 cups mixed greens
- 1/3 cup hazelnuts or pecans, chopped and toasted
- 1/2 cup almond feta
- balsamic reduction*
- salt and pepper, to taste
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and oil two small ramekins, or one medium sized one.
In a blender, blend all the ingredients together. If you have a high powered blender, like a Vita Mix, there should be enough liquid. If not, you may need to add some water, a tablespoon at a time. Blend until you achieve a smooth paste. Be patient, this could take a few minutes.
Place the almond feta into the oiled ramekins and bake for 50-60 minutes.
Let cool for a bit, and then scoop out the cheese and crumble it up!
Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.**
Wash and peel the beets. Lightly cover in olive oil and then wrap in aluminum foil.
Bake the beets for 45-60 minutes. The time will vary depending on how large your beets are. I normally take them out of the oven after 45 minutes and see if I can poke a fork through the beet.
Once the beets have cooked, let them cool. When you can comfortably touch them, slice them up and then throw them in the fridge to cool off completely.
To assemble the salad, place the greens on a plate. Top with the roasted beets, pecans or hazelnuts, and almond feta. Drizzle the balsamic reduction on top and garnish with a little bit of salt and pepper.
*To make a balsamic reduction, take 1 cup of balsamic vinegar and 1/4 cup of brown sugar. Bring to a boil and then let simmer for about 20 minutes, or until reduced by half.
**Alternatively, you can throw the beets on the BBQ. Mine normally take about 30 minutes, but everyone's BBQ's are different so make sure to check on them!