Watch Cooking Channel

Beet Salad with Walnuts, Dates, and Plenty of Garlic

Garlicky Beet Salad Recipe

When it comes time for Russian soirees, there’s no shortage of little bites, known in Russian as zakuski, that precede the main event. Personally, I’ve always been of the zakuski persuasion myself, enjoying the generous spread and often skipping the main course all together.

The word zakuski comes from the word zakusit, meaning “to have a snack”, but really it’s more of a vodka chaser than anything, which would explain why the assortment of various zakuski always includes pickles, herring, tiny meat pies, diminutive bread slices with bites of caviar or salami, and potent salads. The idea is to awaken your palate, to make you hungry for the meal to come. But for me, it’s always meant that my favorite snacks were together in one place.

One of my favorite zakuski family members is this intensely garlicky beet salad that’s ubiquitous at any family gathering. Russian delis also sell them by the quart, making it almost pointless to spend time making your own. But as I’ve tried to use as much organic produce as possible, it’s worth that extra effort.

The original concept is rather simple: grated beets, lots of garlic, mayonnaise, salt and pepper. I’m sure there are variations on a theme, but you get the idea. Just when you think there’s enough garlic, you might want to sneak in a couple of cloves more.

I made this salad once in the presence of an American friend. Her eyes widened in horror as she watched me put almost an entire head of garlic into the salad. She suspected it would be inedible, but quickly understood its charms once everyone was sitting down, plates full, with shots of chilled vodka at their side.

Vodka or not, this is a delicious salad that stands on its own. The garlic is potent, but not abrasive, and I mellowed it out a bit by adding some lemon juice and zest, dates, and chopped walnuts. I also blended sour cream with mayonnaise for a more luxurious feel. The result – a salad I’ll happily bring to any December party, of which I hope there is no shortage.

Garlicky Beet Salad with Walnuts and Dates

2 1/2 pounds beets, preferably organic
1/2 cup walnuts, chopped
7 large garlic cloves, mashed into a paste
6 medjool dates, chopped
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
2 tablespoons sour cream or Greek yogurt
1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste
Zest of 1 lemon, preferably organic
Juice of 1 lemon

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F with the rack in the middle. Trim and halve the beets lengthwise, and place in a 13×9” roasting pan. Fill with enough water so it comes halfway up the sides, cover the top tightly with foil and roast the beets for 30 to 40 minutes (depending on beets’ size), until fork-tender. Remove from the oven, let cool, and slip the skins off. Using the coarsest setting on the food processor or the hand grater, shred the beets.

2. In a large bowl, toss the beets with the remaining ingredients and mix until well-combined. Taste and adjust seasonings accordingly, if needed. Serve immediately or refrigerate.

Serves 8 to 10 as a side dish; more if part of the Russian zakuski-style table.

Olga Massov, is a freelance food writer and recipe developer. In her past life, she spent a decade working in finance, but now gets to assist the likes of Melissa Clark and Andrew Scrivani. Olga writes a bi-weekly column for the Cooking Channel blog, and has been featured by Saveur.comBonAppetit.com, and GourmetLive, among others. Her other work can be found on www.sassyradish.com and her twitter handle is @sassyradish.

Fall Fest with Family and Friends:

Tags:

Comments (1989)

  1. 8 passenger vehicles posted 03/11/2014

    Sources…

    [...]check below, are some totally unrelated websites to ours, however, they are most trustworthy sources that we use[...]……

  2. breaking bad game posted 03/13/2014

    The Ships’s Voyages…

    I think technological innovation just can make it even worse. Now there’s a channel to hardly ever treatment, now there wouldn’t be considered a likelihood for them to discover….

  3. MacBook PRO ssd posted 03/14/2014

    Its hard to find good help…

    I am forever saying that its hard to find quality help, but here is…

  4. Recent Blogroll Additions……

    [...]usually posts some very interesting stuff like this. If you’re new to this site[...]……

  5. check it out posted 03/14/2014

    Online Article……

    [...]The information mentioned in the article are useful [...]……

  6. Visitor recommendations…

    [...]one of our visitors recently recommended the following website[...]……

  7. san diego carpet dying posted 03/16/2014

    Looking around…

    I like to surf around the online world, often I will go to Digg and read and check stuff out…

  8. Plastische Chirurgie posted 03/16/2014

    Informative and precise…

    Its difficult to find informative and accurate info but here I found…

  9. monster megasesso posted 03/17/2014

    Sites we Like……

    [...] Every once in a while we choose blogs that we read. Listed below are the latest sites that we choose [...]……

  10. r/datgap posted 03/17/2014

    Bored at work…

    I like to browse in various places on the internet, often I will just go to Stumble Upon and read and check stuff out…

  11. Portland Orthodontics posted 03/17/2014

    Just Browsing…

    While I was surfing yesterday I noticed a excellent article concerning…

  12. Jacksonville Truck Tire Repair posted 03/18/2014

    Tumblr article…

    I saw a writer writing about this on Tumblr and it linked to…

  13. dental seo posted 03/19/2014

    Informative and precise…

    Its difficult to find informative and accurate information but here I found…

  14. sylhet stadium posted 4 weeks, 1 day ago

    sylhet stadium…

    [...]check beneath, are some entirely unrelated sites to ours, on the other hand, they are most trustworthy sources that we use[...]…

  15. Sell My House Fast Calgary posted 3 weeks, 6 days ago

    News info…

    I was reading the news and I saw this really interesting info…

  16. Advice by Mneb 5 posted 3 weeks, 5 days ago

    Cool sites…

    [...]I came across a nice website that you might enjoy. Take a look if you want[...]……

  17. deals posted 3 weeks, 5 days ago

    deals…

    [...]The facts talked about in the post are several of the best obtainable [...]…

  18. Hanover Virginia Reckless Driving Speeding posted 3 weeks, 5 days ago

    Visitor recommendations…

    [...]one of our visitors recently recommended the following website[...]……

  19. how to become a singer posted 3 weeks, 4 days ago

    Its hard to find good help…

    I am regularly saying that its hard to procure quality help, but here is…

  20. Pinnwand posted 3 weeks, 3 days ago

    Pinnwand…

    [...]Here are several of the web sites we recommend for our visitors[...]…

  21. Tatar war posted 3 weeks, 1 day ago

    Tumblr article…

    I saw someone talking about this on Tumblr and it linked to…

  22. saltwater sandals posted 2 weeks, 6 days ago

    Check this out…

    [...] that is the end of this article. Here you’ll find some sites that we think you’ll appreciate, just click the links over[...]……

  23. best wedding photographer posted 2 weeks, 6 days ago

    Informative and precise…

    Its hard to find informative and precise information but here I found…

  24. my sources posted 2 weeks, 5 days ago

    Websites you should visit…

    [...]below you’ll find the link to some sites that we think you should visit[...]……

  25. find out posted 2 weeks, 5 days ago

    Websites you should visit…

    [...]below you’ll find the link to some sites that we think you should visit[...]……

  26. Popular Indiegogo Campaign posted 2 weeks, 4 days ago

    News info…

    I was reading the news and I saw this really cool information…

  27. website posted 2 weeks, 2 days ago

    website…

    [...]Wonderful story, reckoned we could combine a handful of unrelated data, nonetheless seriously worth taking a look, whoa did 1 master about Mid East has got extra problerms at the same time [...]…

  28. Coffee Paso Robles posted 2 weeks, 1 day ago

    Yahoo results…

    While searching Yahoo I discovered this page in the results and I didn’t think it fit…

  29. fotoleinwand preisvergleich posted 1 week, 6 days ago

    Great website…

    [...]we like to honor many other blogs, even if they aren’t linked to us, by linking to them. Under are some webpages worth checking out[...]……

  30. Loved Ones posted 1 week, 6 days ago

    News info…

    I was reading the news and I saw this really interesting information…

  31. paintless dent repair training posted 1 week, 4 days ago

    paintless dent repair training…

    [...]Sites of interest we’ve a link to[...]…

  32. cheap facebook fans posted 1 week, 1 day ago

    Informative and precise…

    Its hard to find informative and accurate information but here I noted…

  33. Tumblr article…

    I saw someone talking about this on Tumblr and it linked to…

  34. казино posted 5 days, 16 hours ago

    Check this out…

    [...] that is the end of this article. Here you’ll find some sites that we think you’ll appreciate, just click the links over[...]……

  35. whey protein powder singapore posted 4 days, 3 hours ago

    Check this out…

    [...] that is the end of this article. Here you’ll find some sites that we think you’ll appreciate, just click the links over[...]……

  36. buffalo web design posted 3 days, 18 hours ago

    Websites worth visiting…

    [...]here are some links to sites that we link to because we think they are worth visiting[...]……

  37. Check this out…

    [...] that is the end of this article. Here you’ll find some sites that we think you’ll appreciate, just click the links over[...]……

  38. Browse Around These Guys posted 3 days, 14 hours ago

    Check this out…

    [...] that is the end of this article. Here you’ll find some sites that we think you’ll appreciate, just click the links over[...]……

  39. Hardcore posted 3 days, 9 hours ago

    Informative and precise…

    Its hard to find informative and accurate information but here I found…

Post a New Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.

c