Roast Beetroot and Honey Pecan Salad

Do you have any vegetarians visiting for dinner this Christmas? Why not try our Roast Beetroot and Pecan Salad for a delicious alternative to the traditional roasted vegetable sides?

Serves: Four

Time: 60 minutes (plus 10 minutes prep)

Ingredients:

Salad/vegetables

1 large beetroot, sliced into wedges

300g jap pumpkin, sliced 7–10mm thick

1/2 cauliflower, sliced 10mm thick

500g baby spinach (or rocket), washed

Dressing

1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar (or raspberry vinegar)

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 tablespoon maple syrup (or dissolved raw sugar)

Caramelised pecans

1/2 cup of raw pecans

1 tablespoon maple syrup (or honey)

1 tablespoon butter (or butter substitute)

salt, to taste

Method

Put beetroot, cauliflower and pumpkin on a lightly-oiled oven tray and place in oven on medium heat (180°C). Sprinkle more oil over the top and grind pepperover the pumpkin and cauliflower. Cook for 45–60 minutes or until all vegetables are golden brown. You may think the cauliflower looks a little dark, but don’t worry, you want it crispy – and it adds to the flavour!

In a glass, mix apple cider vinegar with 1 tablespoon of maple syrup. Add salt and pepper to taste. This will be your dressing.

Place a frypan over medium heat and add the 2 tablespoons of butter and 1 tablespoon of syrup, add salt and stir. Add the pecans and fry, moving the pan back and forth over heat, or stirring constantly until pecans are brown or syrup has caramelised. Remove pecans from pan and allow to cool. Pour any excess syrup from the pan into dressing mixture.

Put spinach in a large bowl. Then drizzle dressing over the top,then add the cauliflower, pumpkin and beetroot in this order. Sprinkle with pecans and serve.

Written by Leon Della Bosca

Leon Della Bosca has worked in publishing and media in one form or another for around 25 years. He's a voracious reader, word spinner and art, writing, design, painting, drawing, travel and photography enthusiast. You'll often find him roaming through galleries or exploring the streets of his beloved Melbourne and surrounding suburbs, sketchpad or notebook in hand, smiling.
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