Seasonal eating, in a nutshell: kale, Swiss chard, spinach, collard greens, and mustard greens, for days and weeks and months. And then, just when you think you can’t eat another hearty winter sandwich, wintertime frittata, or bowl of beans and greens, it’s gone. Suddenly, farmers’ market tables and Tucson CSA bins are filled with springtime’s best: tender carrots, baby beets, turnips, broccoli, and green garlic. And everything is new again. Eating within the confines of a season is challenging, rewarding, and inspiring. I was inspired by the fresh crops of spring to create this sweet Roasted Carrot and Beet Salad with Citrus Vinaigrette.
The sweet carrots, which are tossed in a bit of honey, caramelize in the oven until they’re perfectly tender. Served alongside sweet, earthy beets, they
scream gently whisper, “spring.”
And, because sudden breakups are often difficult (and eating seasonally isn’t), I incorporated some winter produce (arugula and citrus) into this Roasted Carrot and Beet Salad. This salad is essentially the best of winter and spring: light, peppery arugula topped with caramelized carrots, sweet beets, creamy goat cheese, and buttery pecans. Then, because I can’t quite let go of the fact that the end of citrus season is upon us, the whole delicious mess is tossed in a simple Meyer lemon vinaigrette. Oh, my, it’s so good.
This Roasted Carrot and Beet Salad would make the perfect lunch salad, side salad, or Easter brunch salad. As much as any salad can, this Roasted Carrot and Beet Salad represents a sweet goodbye to winter and a welcoming hello to spring.