Easy AND Fancy Spinach Salad with Goat Cheese & Beet Recipes

September 20, 2010 Katja Presnal

I visited one of the most innovative restaurants I’ve ever been to, Crop Bistro & Bar in Cleveland, OH, long time ago, and fell in love with Chile Deviled Eggs with Crisp Pork and Roasted Beets, Goat Cheese, Watercress & Herbs w/ Pistachios & Orange Vinaigrette. Steve Schimoler, the innovative chef of the Crop Bistro told to re-create the beet-goat-cheese-dish, but I totally forgot how he made it and it took me a while to find something like it again.

Then I visited The Lodge of Woodloch in Pennsylvania and had another salad with beets & goat cheese, and knew I was not going home without knowing how to make it! Luckily the lodge offers cooking demonstration with their chef Matthew Vinetti and he shared his secret lemon-tarragon vinaigrette for his Beet & Goat Cheese Salad.

I’m so excited to share Matthew Vinetti’s secret lemon-tarragon vinaigrette for his Beet & Goat Cheese Salad recipe with you, but I like to cook home food that is fast and easy, so I made my own recipe inspired by this one. So the choice is yours – go the easy way or take your time to create even better culinary experience.

NOTE: You only need about 1/2 of the vinaigrette made in the recipes, but I recommend making the whole amount. The vinaigrette stays good about two weeks, and is great for many other dishes as well.

MATTHEW VINETTI’S BEET, GOAT CHEESE AND OLIVES WITH LEMON-TARRAGON VINAIGRETTE ON SPINACH
3 beets
kalamata olives
spinach
goat cheese

Lemon-Tarragon Vinegairette
1/2 cup olive oil
1/4 cup water
1/2 white balsamic vinegar
1 small chopped shallot
juice of 2 lemons
1/8 cup chopped fresh tarragon
1/8 cup honey
Pinch salt & pepper

1. Boil the beets for 20 to 30 minutes, until tender. Drain and cool, then cut in to cubes.
2. Mix the Lemon-Tarragon Vinaigrette. Squeeze the lemons and chop the shallot and tarragon and just mix all the ingredients well.
3. Wash & drain the fresh spinach.
4. Cut the goat cheese.
5. Assemble the plates by adding the spinach first and drizzling it with the Lemon-Tarragon Vinaigrette and then olives, beet cubes and goat cheese. Serve immediately.

So that is the gourmet version, but it takes time because you have to boil the beets, and wait them to cool down, the beets do taste excellent this way, and I recommend doing this if you are serving this dish in a dinner party, but I wanted to re-create this recipe that it fits in my lifestyle and need of getting good food on the table fast every day. My recipe takes less than 10 minutes from start to finish, and yes, it is yummy!

KATJA’S EASY SPINACH SALAD WITH GOAT CHEESE & BEETS & ORANGE-LEMON VINAIGRETTE
1/2 can diced beets
spinach
goat cheese

Orange-Lemon Vinaigrette
1/2 cup olive oil
1/2 cup white balsamic vinegar
2 table spoons orange marmelade
Juice of 1 lemon
2 tsp sugar
salt & pepper

1. Mix the vinaigrette. The hardest job is really squeezing the lemon.
2. Wash and drain the spinach and the beets (in separate colanders!).
3. Cut the goat cheese.
4. Mix the salad – add the spinach first, drizzle with vinaigrette and then add beets & goat cheese.

Katja Presnal

Katja Presnal shows how to live Nordic inspired life to the fullest and plan your dream life. Katja owns Presnal5 strategic marketing intelligence agency and wants to help marketing professionals to combine a dream career and dream life via freelance work.Katja is an award-winning marketing strategist, and a well-known speaker. Katja has lived in five different countries, and seven states in the USA. Her three children were all born in different countries within three years. When not working or jet-setting the world, Katja is at home cooking big family dinners.She has been featured in NY Times, Glamour, Redbook, Fodor's, Forbes and Woman's Day magazines among many other national and international publications and written for MTV3 and Lifetime TV networks.

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