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You Can't Beet This Recipe, Honey!


In honor of National Heart Month, I once again asked Aviva Goldfarb for a favorite red food recipe–and for many, including my husband, you just can’t beat beets! This lentil/beet salad with honey lemon dressing from SOS! The Six O’Clock Scramble to the Rescue is sure to please, so try it out. I’ll be happy to post your photos of this dish at the end of the blog post, so please share them!

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook time: 50 minutes

Makes 4 servings (about 1 ¾ cups each)

Aviva says “This is the most delicious combination, especially if you are crazy about beets like I am (I’m growing my own for the first time this year!).  For this salad, I used pre-cooked and vacuum packed lentils and beets from Trader Joe’s, but it’s also terrific with freshly cooked lentils and fresh steamed beets.  Serve it with Sugar Snap Peas with Cashews and pita bread or Indian naan.”

Ingredients:

2 cups cooked lentils (or 1 cup uncooked)

4 beets (pre-steamed, if available), quartered and diced

½ cup crumbled goat or feta cheese

½ lemon,  juice only, about ¼ cup

1 Tbsp. honey

2 Tbsp. olive oil

2 tsp. fresh dill, finely chopped, or use ½ tsp. dried dill

Directions:

(Start the sugar snap peas first, if you’re making them.) In a medium-sized bowl, combine cooked lentils, steamed beets and the cheese (if lentils and/or beets aren’t pre-cooked, see instructions below). In a small bowl or measuring cup, whisk together the lemon juice, honey, oil and dill, and pour it over the salad. Toss gently, and serve immediately or chill it for up to 3 days.

To cook the lentils, rinse 1 cup lentils in a colander or bowl. In a medium saucepan with a lid, bring 1 1/2 cups water to a boil.  Add the lentils to the boiling water, reduce the heat, cover the pan, and simmer the lentils for 25-30 minutes until they are tender to the bite. Drain any remaining liquid. Season the lentils with salt to taste. (This makes more than two cups of cooked lentils, so measure them before adding them to the salad.) You can make the lentils up to 2 days in advance.

To steam the beets, scrub the beets, and cut off the greens, leaving about 1 inch of stems attached to the beets. In a saucepan, bring about 1 inch of water to a gentle boil.  Steam the beets, covered, for 45 minutes, until they are fork tender. Drain the beets, rinse them in cold water, and peel the skins, using your fingers or a vegetable peeler. You can make the beets up to 2 days in advance.

Scramble Flavor Booster: Use the juice of a whole lemon to make the dressing and season the salad with freshly ground black pepper.

Tip: The sweet taste of beets reflects their high sugar content making them an important raw material for the production of refined sugar; they have the highest sugar content of all vegetables, yet are very low in calories. As a general rule, the smaller the beet, the sweeter it is.

Side Dish suggestion:  In a small skillet, heat 1 Tbsp. olive oil over medium heat. Add 8 oz. (about 2 cups) sugar snap peas and sauté them, stirring frequently, for 3-4 minutes. Add 1/4 cup chopped cashews and sauté them for about 2 more minutes and serve.

Side Dish suggestion:  Serve it with pita bread or naan, either warmed in the microwave for about 1 minute or wrapped in foil and warmed in the oven at 300 degrees for 8 – 10 minutes.

Nutritional info per serving:

Calories 270, Total Fat 11g, Saturated Fat 3g, Cholesterol 10mg, Sodium 490mg, Total Carbohydrate 34g, Dietary Fiber 11g, Sugar 12g, Protein 13g.

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About The Author

Elisa Zied is a nationally recognized registered dietitian nutritionist, author, speaker, and spokesperson. A trusted source of food, nutrition, and health information, Elisa has garnered millions of media impressions, lending her expertise and real-world perspective to dozens of TV shows, web sites, news organizations and magazines. She’s the author of four nutrition books and is currently working on her first novel. You can find her previous Food, Fitness & Fiction posts here and connect with her on Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr and Facebook.

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