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A recipe for beetroot, squash, and lentil salad

To all you beetroot haters out there, and I know you are legion, I say: you are wrong. I grant you that there is something muddy tasting about the beet, but it's the nicest kind of mud. And beetroot are purple, which is another reason to love them - who doesn't want to eat something that can give them rose coloured wee?

Alas, if you're not already on the beetroot bandwagon, there's pretty much nothing I can do to convince you that this is the veggie you should be eating right now.

But I can say if you have some beetroot knocking around, this is a sort of minimal effort salad you can make and serve hot, room temperature or cold, depending on how you're rolling today.

Keep a few squash cubes back for colour, and make sure you've got a lot of thyme to hand - though if you're in a mood to use rosemary instead, I'll support your right to do so all the way.

Warm beetroot, squash, and lentil salad
Makes one large big bowl

250g cooked, cubed beetroot
350g cooked, cubed squash
100g brown lentils
2tbs olive oil
2 and a half tbsp of red wine vinegar
2tbsp of fresh thyme leaves
Salt and pepper

How you do it
If you haven't got your squash and beetroot cooked, peel and cook them with a little oil for about 25 minutes at 200C.
Cook your lentils by boiling them according to instructions - about 30 minutes of simmering should do it.
Drain the lentils, stir in the beetroot, vinegar, olive oil, and thyme leaves and stir. Be generous with your salt and pepper too. Leave for 10 minutes for the lentils to soak up the dressing.
Add the squash cubes at the last minute so they keep their colour (or just don't, you'll get more flavour, but everything will go the same shade of purple).
Drizzle with a bit of olive oil.

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  1. I wouldn't say I'm a big fan of beets, but I won't refuse to eat them, either, so if you were to offer the salad to me, I would happily eat some. Not sure, though, if I like beets enough to make my own salad. I do love borscht, and have made that, so maybe I should be more open-minded.

  2. Hmmm... I like golden beets when finely shredded in a summer salad, but otherwise turn my nose. But just because I adore you, I will try this out! :)

  3. Oh you have made me laugh Joey - muddy - I would perhaps say earthy, but I totally know what you mean. I have fallen for beetroot, but it took a while for this to happen. I have not had the sweet butternut combo with the muddy beet though and that does interest me. I am sure you have tried it, but the best way to convert beet haters is with a Beet Cake. Here's one I made a long time ago if your interested http://allotment2kitchen.blogspot.co.uk/2013/09/vegan-beetroot-chocolate-cake-with.html

  4. Yep that is my kind of salad - I am on the beetroot bandwagon - love it but don't eat it enough - mind you I was disappointed to have a rainbow salad with beetroot at a cafe recently and found that it was golden beetroot rather than crimson!

  5. You're preaching to the choir here; I ADORE beets and can't get enough of them! This salad is exactly the kind of thing I could eat any day, every day. I'm getting hungry just thinking about it...

  6. I'm a huge fan of beets! However... I don't love the way everything plus my hands ends up pink so i now stuck to the yellow beets.
    And i could be imagining it but i think the yellow ones are less "earthy" for the haters out there.
    I always have to have dill and vinegar with beets since my russian friend served me some that way years and years ago.

  7. When I was younger, I wasn't much of a fan of beets. With age, comes wisdom and sure do like 'em now. Love the simple ingredients of the salad. :-)

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