Cherry Tomato and Roasted Beet Salad

This salad is an homage to my dear mother. Raw tomatoes and roasted beets were two foods she loved. Interestingly enough, I hated both of these as a kid. Thankfully my tastes have matured with me.

Have you tried sun gold cherry tomatoes? If not, try them. They will change your entire perception of tomatoes. I have never been a huge fan of raw tomatoes, but I will eat sun gold tomatoes like they are candy. I nearly cried when sprouts to grow my own died last spring. I will be trying again next spring.

Cherry Tomato and Roasted Beet Salad (Serves 4 as a side dish)


3 medium beets
1 (10.5 ounce) package sun gold cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
4 green onions, chopped white and green parts
¼ cup chopped walnuts
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoon Dijon or other spicy mustard
¼ teaspoon pepper
¼ teaspoon salt

1.  Preheat oven to 400.  Scrub beets and trim any greens.  Pierce several times with fork and individually wrap each beet in foil.  Roast in oven for about 1 hour, until tender.  Check beets after 45 minutes for doneness and to make sure they aren’t too dry.  If drying out, sprinkle with some water and rewrap.

2.  Unwrap beets, and set out to cool. Once beets are cool, peel and slice.

3. Combine beets, tomatoes, green onions, and walnuts in a shallow bowl.

4. Whisk together remaining ingredients to make dressing. Pour over salad. Lightly toss to coat. Serve immediately.

Nutritional Information (Amount per Serving):

Calories: 202
Protein: 3.7 g
Fat: 15 g
Saturated Fat: 1.9 g
Cholesterol: 0 mg
Carbohydrates: 15 g
Fiber: 4 g
Sodium: 213 mg

Recipe Notes: If you have enough and they look good, you can save the beet greens. Use them like you would kale, mustard greens, spinach, etc. The beets should peel just with your fingers if they are cooked enough. You could use any variety of tomatoes, but I like the sweetness of cherry tomatoes with the acidic dressing and hearty beets. A few crumbles of feta, goat cheese, or cubed avocado would also be nice additions to this salad. The beets will stain EVERYTHING red/purple – hands, clothes, etc. The tomatoes will take on a slight purple tinge, too. But it still tastes delicious. If you don’t want the color to bleed like that, don’t mix until just about to serve and mix as little as possible. Also, I know the fat seems high. But look how low it is in saturated fat. It is all the monounsaturated fats from the olive oil. Read here about those are good.

Source: slightly adapted from Cooking Light

Low Iodine adjustment:  Leave out the salt and mustard from dressing.  Season with fresh or dried herbs.

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