The bright orange color of golden beets combined with the rich red of pomegranate seeds make this salad a lovely fall dish, but mention beets and pomegranates to almost any mother and I bet her response will be “STAIN.” Both beets and pomegranates are well known for their stain-making abilities. Just ask my kids why for many years I wouldn’t let them eat pomegranates. Pomegranates are like piñatas – you have to work hard, before you are rewarded with a spray of treats! A spray, though, hardly describes the scene I found on what would be my kids’ last day of eating pomegranates in our house. Explosion is a far better word. As I approached my kids sitting at the nucleus of the explosion, my eyes took on a wild-eyed look that only a mother with three children who had just turned her white kitchen into a red polka-dotted one could have. I looked at them. They just sat there, looked back at me, and said, “What?” If not for a kitchen remodel that occurred years later, I’m sure I’d still find pomegranate juice stain somewhere in the kitchen!
Even if you think you don’t like beets, try this recipe. You might be pleasantly surprised!
Golden Beet and Pomegranate Salad
Recipe from Elise Bauer’s Simply Recipes
3 golden beets
1 cup diced red onions
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1/4 cup chicken broth (or vegetarian broth for vegetarian option)
3 Tbsp Triple Sec or other orange-flavored liqueur
1 Tbsp sugar
1/2 teaspoon grated orange peel
1 cup pomegranate seeds
2 cups arugula and butter lettuce leaves
1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
1. Cook the beets – either boil them for 45 minutes or roast them at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for an hour. Let cool. Peel and dice into 1/2-inch cubes.
2. In a medium skillet over high heat, bring diced beets, onion, vinegar, broth, liqueur, sugar, and orange peel to a boil, stirring often, until liquid is reduced to 2 Tbsp, about 5 minutes. Let cool to room temperature.
3. Stir in pomegranate seeds into the beet mixture and salt to taste. Serve on top of salad greens on individual plates. Sprinkle with feta cheese.
The beet mixture could be made ahead. Before serving, stir the pomegranate seeds into the beet mixture. I added a little freshly ground black pepper to the beet mixture. For my greens, I mixed baby spinach leaves and a spring salad mix together. I plated this salad on a beautiful blue platter (complementary color of the orange beets) instead of individual plates. This delicious salad really does not require any additional salad dressing, but if you feel the need for dressing, either make a pomegranate vinaigrette or buy a good brand of raspberry vinaigrette.