This recipe has kind of evolved from one for a dish from Le Reminet restaurant in Paris, one of my favourites. It is one of the first dishes I mastered, owing to a teenage boyfriend who eschewed all vegetables with the exception of beetroot .All dishes put in front of him were dissected with all the precision of the state pathologist.Thus, I cook this from memory and am not entirely sure how far I have deviated from the original.It is an unusual dish, in that in can fit in as part of a Spanish tapas menu (I had something very similar recently in Brindisa), as part of a mezze (Moro also have a similar recipe) or as a Scandinavian side dish to accompany gravad lax (I am told, I have never actually managed to bring myself to eat gravad lax). It can be made with yoghurt, creme fraiche or sour cream, and a variety of herbs , such as flat parsley for Middle Eastern, dill or chives for Scandinavian, tarragon for Spanish, really whatever is to hand. I have also used it as the base for a stir fry with cashews and kale. It is also lovely with some goats cheese and salad leaves ,omitting the yoghurt/creme fraiche/sour cream. It is a genuinely versatile, easy dish, with a fairly spectacular colour. If you are a messy eater, you may want to stick to dark coloured clothes for this one.
Serves four as a side.
- 200g cooked beetroot, in 1cm cubes
- 2 teaspoons roasted ground cumin (or just powdered cumin)
- 1 hefty tablespoon of selected dairy product
- 1 tablespoon wine vinegar
- 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- 2 cloves garlic
- olive oil
- 1 bunch herbs of your choice
- Saute the beetroot over a medium heat in a saucepan in some oil.
- Once the beetroot turns bright pink (3-5 minutes), add the vinegars, and cook until reduced completely
- Add the cumin and garlic, toss, and cook for 30 seconds.
- Remove from the heat, stir in the cream/creme.
- Season and serve warm.