Thursday, July 14, 2011

Beet Salad with Walnut 'Cream Cheese'

This month, in honor of both summer and the release of Brendan Brazier’s latest cookbook release, Whole Foods to Thrive, we decided to whip up this delightfully flavorful and bright salad. Brendon is a vegan triathlon and founder of Vega nutritional products. His book is packed with delicious recipes and this one is no exception. Pairing simply roasted beets with a lemony walnut ‘cheese’ we found this salad especially satisfying. We made several modifications, including decreasing the amount of olive oil rather significantly, increasing the walnuts and serving over a mix of arugula and one of our favorite new greens, mache. With the changes, our version of the walnut mixture turned out less like a cream cheese and closer to a paté. You can find the full original recipe here on


  • 3 beets
  • 1 bunch of frisée or favorite greens (mesclun, arugula)
  • Dressing
  • 3 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • ¼ cup finely chopped shallots
  • ½ cup white balsamic vinegar

Cream Cheese
  • 1 cup raw walnuts
  • Juice from ½ lemon (reserve second half, zest removed)
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 TB honey
  • Salt to taste
  • Lemon zest (add to taste)
  • 1 clove garlic


Beets – Preheat oven to 450°F. Wash beets, then wrap in aluminum foil and roast in oven for 30 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool. When cool to the touch, slip off skins and slice.

Dressing – Mix all ingredients together.

Lemon Cream Cheese – Place all ingredients in a food processor. Process until mixture resembles a coarse cream cheese. Add additional lemon juice if necessary and lemon zest for flavor.

To serve – Arrange about one-quarter of the beets around the rim of a plate. Place one quarter of the frisée in the center of the plate, then drizzle dressing over frisée and beets. Take two tablespoons: with one, scoop out some Lemon Herb Cream Cheese and with the other, form it into an ovoid shape and place on frisée.

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