Citrus Beet Salad with Arugula

Go Gourmet at Your Next Barbecue with these Revamped Summer Classics

Serves: 4-6

Ingredients:

    4 large beets, with peels

    4 large avocados, peeled and finely diced

    2 cups blood orange slices

    2 cups arugula

    2 sprigs of tarragon, leaves removed and reserved

    Olive oil

    Salt and pepper, to taste

    Citrus dressing *

    Beet cracklin**

*Citrus Dressing:

    2 tbsp of blood orange juice

    2 tbsp of rice wine vinegar

    4 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil

    Salt, to taste

**Beet Cracklin:

    4oz of tapioca flour

    2 large red beets, peeled and wedged

    Pinch of salt, plus extra for frying

    2 qts peanut oil

DIRECTIONS:

1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.

2. Coat beets in olive oil, salt and pepper.

3. Wrap the beets in aluminum foil and bake until a paring knife can be inserted  easily to the middle. Remove the beets from the oven and cool, peel and cut into wedges. Set aside.

4. For the beet cracklin, juice the beet wedges, making sure to save the pulp and juice separately. Place the pulp on a tray and put into a dehydrator for 2 hours on high to remove any extra moisture. Place the dehydrated pulp into your spice grinder and grind into a fine powder.   

6. Combine the tapioca flour, pinch of salt, ¼ oz of beet powder, and 3 ½ oz of beet juice. Divide the mixture between two quart bags, seal tightly without creating any air bubbles, and roll flat.   

7. Set up a steamer on your stove so that the bags can lay as flat as possible and can be covered.   

8. When water is simmering and steam is abundant, lay the bags in, cover,  and steam for 10 minutes. Then, turn the bags and steam for an additional 10 minutes.   

9. Immediately after steaming, open the bags, cut down the sides, and peel

the beet chips from the plastic.   

10. Place the chips onto the rack of the dehydrator and let them dry out at 140° for 10 hours.

11. In a large 2-gallon pot, bring the peanut oil to 360°. Break the beet chips into random pieces and fry them until they puff. Season with salt.

12. For the citrus dressing, blend all ingredients in a small bowl. Set aside.

13. For the salad, divide the beets, avocado and orange on the centre of each plate. Toss the arugula with a couple of tablespoons of the citrus dressing. Garnish with the beet cracklin.