Beet & Sweet Potato Stacks
Sorry for the brief interruption in posting.
Hurricane Sandy messed up my cooking (and photography lighting) plans.
I've been cleaning up our yard from the branches and debris tossed around from the storm, and thankfully, that damn tree has been removed from my roof, only to leave us a nice souvenir, a small hole.
We are still without power, heat or electric, but this little wifi hotspot connected to my iphone has been working well (though it is getting very expensive!).
I really have no complaints, except that it's been very difficult to find a gas station that is open, and then when you finally get to the front of the line, the station is out of gas.
We have friends who lost their shore homes, and primary residences. They lost everything, so who cares about a tree, a little heat and electricity? It's nothing in the real scope of things. We are still here.
And you still think that global warming doesn't exist? Really.
Hope you all made it thru the storm and are safe and sound.
I made this recipe last week, before we lost power, so here it is.
Now back to our regular scheduled programming.
Everyone loves the look of food towers, but no one likes to eat them.
When the plate arrives at the table, I always wonder "how do I eat this?".
Do I knock it down or slice into it?
Food towers make a beautiful presentation, however are a big pain to eat.
This recipe is different.
They were beautiful, as well as easy to eat and very delicious.
There was also a big advantage to this recipe. You can assemble everything the night before, and then just reheat them before serving. A big plus in my book.
Ingredients list: (quantities are approximate and depend on how many stacks you want)
Original recipe adapted from The Kitchn.
4 beets, trimmed, but save the greens
4 sweet potatoes
smoked paprika (pimenton)
handful of walnuts
a tablespoon of cider vinegar
a small log of goat cheese
There are a few steps involved in this laborious process.
First, you roast the beets (save the beet greens for the topping). 400F, trimmed and drizzled with olive oil and kosher salt. Cover with foil and roast for 1 hour. When cool enough to handle, peel off the skins and slice into 1/4"-1/2" rounds. A messy job, but someone's got to do it.
While the beets are roasting, cook the sweet potato rounds.
Slice the potatoes (skins on) into same size rounds as the beets. Drizzle them with olive oil and kosher salt and sprinkle some smoked paprika (pimenton) on top to coat.
Bake on a baking sheet in a 400F oven for 10 minutes, then flip over for another 12 minutes.
Cool the beets and sweet potatoes completely.
Next (yes, another step), chop the beet greens, throwing away the tough stems.
Slice an onion. Add the greens and onion in a saute pan with olive oil. Season with kosher salt and saute about 10 minutes until onions and greens are wilted. Splash with a tablespoon of cider vinegar. Throw in a handful of chopped walnuts at the last minute into the pan. This is your topping.
Make the Dressing (optional, I didn't feel that they really needed this step):
1/4 cup orange juice from one orange
2 tablespoons cider vinegar
4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
salt and pepper
Now we can start layering (unless you've fallen asleep by now).
Starting with a beet slice, lay down a slice and top with a pinchful of goat cheese (this is your glue). Then top with a sweet potato slice. Next, another plunk of goat cheese glue and a beet slice. You get the rhythm here, ending with a sweet potato round.
Top with a spoonful of the greens, walnut and onion mixture.
Your stacks are made.
At this point, you can refrigerate the tray, covered with plastic wrap until ready to reheat the next day.
Reheat all the pretty towers in a 350F oven, covered with foil for about 15 minutes.
Serve warm with some dressing drizzled on top if you like. But the next time I make these, I would not bother with the dressing. I felt these were good enough on their own, and easy to cut into neatly with a knife, without knocking them down!
These were really delicious, (but really a pain to make).