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)
1 onion
handful of walnuts
olive oil
kosher salt
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).


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June said…
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.----Really, you don't need to peel the beets. I roast them this way and never peel them, you don't notice the skin at all. Since you don't peel the sweet potatoes, I suspect the beet skins well just blend in. Can't wait to try the recipe--looks great:) Hope things are improving in New Jersey. It will be a long time for many people til life returns to anything near normal.
Joanne said…
If there's anything that proves that global warming exists, in my opinion, it's two hurricanes up here in two years! Craziness. But I really hope we'll figure out a way to be better prepared next time. We can't keep doing this!
Stacey Snacks said…
Joanne, don't forget the Halloween snow storm (2 months after Irene), that knocked down 30% of suburban trees! and the earthquake. We've had 4 strange weather mess in 14 months.
Oui Chef said…
This dish looks great, and I'm happy to hear you're doing OK. Hang in there, and know that we'll all be waiting patiently for your return to the kitchen. - S
Unknown said…
I admire you posting in the middle of a lack of heat/electricity/etc. Hope you get your power back soon! I am in Hoboken and we just got it yesterday...what a mess this all is but you're right, we should just be grateful to get out basically unscathed.
Sheri W. said…
We went 2-1/2 weeks from one hurricane but never, ever were we cold! Stay warm!
Christine said…
So glad the scary tree is gone and there was so little damage to the house. Was wondering if the power had been turned back on, especially with the winter creeping in. These little towers are quite tasty looking. I might try these substituting sliced delicata squash rings for the potatoes. Love squash and that one has an edible skin. Stay warm and dry!
I don't care if it's a pain to make it looks beautiful and I can't wait to make it, love little stacks! But most of all I love your attitude!
Vicki said…
I totally believe global warming is a real thing. I agree with David Letterman (talk show host) that it's wrong to not be something discussed by either presidential candidate. Even in The Weather Channel reports, seasoned weather guys like that enthusiastic and knowledgeable Jim Cantore weren't ruling it out. While you're having the Frankenstorm, we're like 20 to 30 degrees hotter than we usually are on the West Coast/Southern California; it was 101 degrees yesterday afternoon and 103 degrees today, yet we're to possibly get rain by the end of the week (yeah, right; dream on; we're in a DROUGHT) and are supposed to drop to 40 degrees at night by the weekend. Say what? And just a few months ago, all those big Colorado's nutz.

By the way, colorful and healthy beet snacks. I think they look worth making; yum. It's great how you're marching forward and carrying on in the kitchen with all the power problems!
tasteofbeirut said…
I'd love to dig into this! Sorry you had to endure this storm and glad your damages were not extensive! your house is still there, thank GOD!
Carol from California said…
I feel like you are my "friend from New Jersey". I'm from SF bay area and today we will have strange weather in the 80's. My thoughts have been with you and your neighbors. I'm sure you consider yourself fortunate to only have that "little hole" in your roof. Keep up the wonderful cooking, writing and photography. I love it all. Signed, Carol from Menlo park. ( the one near Stanford, not NJ)
rain said…
stacey, the same thing happened to our roof! well, the tree didn't total anyones car though (YIKES, how does that work w/ insurance?) we live in toms river and it is crazy down here. i hope you are staying safe and warm.