Beetroot, quinoa, rhubarb and ponzu

Beetroot, quinoa, rhubarb and ponzu

By
From
Real Food by Mike
Serves
4
Photographer
Alan Benson

This salad is so colourful and full of texture. It’s this simple method of cooking beetroot that enables you to keep their integrity and colour and also allows you to peel them after they have been cooked. It’s best to wear a pair of gloves if you don’t want to stain your hands. The rhubarb in this salad adds a lovely tart flavour and is a nice way to serve something in its raw state. The curing from the salt and sugar helps break down the texture.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
170g mixed white and red quinoa, rinsed and soaked
1kg mixed beetroot, such as regular, baby, golden
100ml extra virgin olive oil
250g rhubarb, sliced very tingly diagonally, using a mandoline
1 pinch sugar
1 fennel bulb, thinly sliced
1/4 bunch coriander, leaves picked
1/2 bunch watercress, leaves picked

Yuzu ponzu dressing

Quantity Ingredient
125ml ponzu
25ml yuzu juice
75ml extra-virgin olive oil
25ml sesame oil

Method

  1. For the yuzu ponzu dressing, combine all the ingredients in a glass jar and shake well. Set aside.
  2. Put the quinoa and 375 ml (11/2 cups) water in a saucepan over medium–high heat and bring to the boil. When it starts to boil, turn the heat to the lowest setting and place a lid on the pan. Cook as for steamed rice for 10 minutes then turn off the heat, not opening the lid at all during this time. Leave it resting with the lid on for another 10 minutes. Remove the lid, fluff up the quinoa with a fork and leave to cool.
  3. Preheat the oven to 180°C.
  4. Toss the beetroot in the olive oil, season with a little salt and freshly ground black pepper and place them in a roasting tin. Cover the tin tightly with aluminium foil and bake for 30 minutes. Remove the tin from the oven and open the foil. Test the smaller beetroot first to see if they are done – they are cooked when the skin rubs off with your finger. Remove any beetroot that are cooked, cover the tin again with the foil and cook for another 15–20 minutes. Test again and remove the beetroot that are ready. When the beetroot are cool, rub the skin off and cut the beetroot into your desired shapes.
  5. Toss the rhubarb in a bowl with the sugar and a pinch of salt and leave for 10 minutes.
  6. Arrange the quinoa, beetroot, fennel and rhubarb on a serving platter and garnish with the coriander and watercress. Pour over the dressing, adjust the seasoning and serve.

Note

  • Yuzu is a Japanese lime that tastes like a sour mandarin. You should find fresh yuzu or bottled yuzu juice in Asian grocery stores. If you can’t find it, use lime instead.

Medicinal Benefit

  • Beetroot contains an amino acid that can lower homocysteine levels in the blood, which means lowering the risk of heart disease and stroke. They also contain folates, for new cell creation. Rhubarb is rich in vitamin A, B complex vitamins and in vitamin K, for maintaining healthy bones and for blood clotting.
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