Editor's note: On Mondays, Kristen Swensson of Cheap, Healthy, Good swings by these parts to share healthy and delicious recipes with us. Since she's busy getting married and honeymooning this week (congrats Kristen!), her fellow CHG blogger Leigh Angel who writes the Veggie Might column is stepping in. Take it away, Leigh! —The Mgmt.
In the past, I've run wailing from fruit salads, particularly ones that call for dried fruit, like raisins, dates, or currants—or marshmallows, gelatin, or bananas. My fruit consumption comes mainly in the form of whole fruit: a bunch of grapes, a mango, a grapefruit. But apples and bananas living together...mass hysteria.
Then I came across Bryant Terry's Shredded Beet, Apple, and Currant Salad with Apple Vinaigrette in his fabulous cookbook, Vegan Soul Kitchen. Certainly the pairing of earthy beets and tart apples sounded intriguing, and I liked that the dressing contains no sugar other than fruit juice. Plus, my boyfriend really likes dried fruit, so I was willing to make this small sacrifice.
Everything came together quickly with the use of a food processor for shredding the beets and apples, and the vinaigrette whips up in a snap. The resulting fall salad is tangy, crunchy, and sweet but not cloying. The texture alone makes it a winner.
At first, I thought the beets might overpower the dish, but the balance was perfect. In fact, the currants made the dish, adding just the right amount of sweetness to offset the earthy and tangy flavors. It's still sinking in that I liked the currants. Keep an eye on the sky for the rain of fire and brimstone.
Note: The original recipe called for two cups of apple juice to be reduced to a half cup, but then only requires 1 tablespoon of the reduction for the vinaigrette. I altered the amount of apple juice to 1/4 cup to achieve the 1 tablespoon reduction.
- 2 large fresh beets, peeled
- 2 large tart apples, cored, peeled
- 1/4 cup apple juice
- 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- Kosher salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1/2 cup currants
Coarsely shred beets and apples on box grater or food processor fitted with large grater attachment. Combine in large mixing bowl and set aside.
Heat apple juice in small saucepan or skillet over high heat until boiling. Cook until reduced to one tablespoon, about 3 minutes. Transfer to medium mixing bowl. Add apple cider vinegar to reduced apple juice. Slowly drizzle in olive oil while whisking constantly. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Drizzle dressing over shredded beets and apples, add currants, and toss to coat. Serve immediately.