A delicious starter to any meal, this compound salad has a wonderful mix of texture and flavor, not to mention it’s chock-full of goodness. I’ve used a delicious French, matured goat cheese. A goat curd would be just as elegant.
10 small red beetroot (beets)
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
Ciabatta loaf (waxy textured Italian style bread)
1/2 clove garlic
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoons 150g (5oz) green beans (blanched in boiling salt water, until tender then refreshed under cold water)
40g (1.5oz) matured goats cheese
1/4 bunch basil leaves
To prepare the beets for roasting, scrub under running cold water to remove dirt. Sprinkle with a little oil and season with salt and pepper. Wrap beetroot individually in foil and roast in a pre-heated oven at 180-200C/300-400F, for around 40 minutes. To test if ready, push a skewer into the larger of the beetroots (beets); there should be no resistance. Remove from oven and let cool for 20 minutes.
Feel free to peel the skin by pushing skin away using fingertips, however, not necessary if scrubbed well. To prepare the Ciabatta, slice as fine as possible (you only need 6 pieces). Place in a medium to low oven for a few minutes to dry out until crisp. To prepare the dressing, perfume a bowl with garlic by rubbing the cut side over the surface of the bowl, then discard clove. Add olive oil and vinegar along with a pinch of salt and pepper.
Toss beans, beets, crumbled dried Ciabatta and goat cheese through dressing and assemble on plate. Scatter with basil leaves and serve.