This roasted beet salad is perfumed beautifully with our exotic cardamom vinaigrette is just perfect for pot lucks and picnics as it can be made ahead, travels so well and just HUGE on flavour.
This roasted beet salad is full of earthy beet flavour with the wonderful aroma of cardamom, while the crushed pistachio nuts add a pop of colour and an exotic crunch.
This salad is suitable for vegan and vegetarian dieters, it is paleo-friendly as it uses apple cider vinegar and is also gluten and dairy-free.
More on Cardamom
I have used cardamom to spice up my roasted beets, which is popular in Indian and middle eastern cooking and is a seed pod in the ginger family. There are two main varieties black and green, the difference apart from the colour is that the black are larger and have a smokier flavour. Cardamom has a wonderful aroma and complex flavours with herby, citrusy, mint-like notes.
You will find cardamom seeds in an Indian specialty shop, or you can buy it online from Herbie’s in Australia, and either iHerb or Amazon in the US. If push comes to shove, you can always crack open the pods and remove the seeds, but this is quite time-consuming.
As an alternative try it with fennel seed but trust me you are going to be really missing without the cardamom!
You will find that roasting your beets whole will make them softer and so much easier to peel and cut into, quarters. However, if you would like them to roast faster then it is best to flex your muscles and cut them before roasting.
Roasting your beets
- Preheat your oven 220°C 425°F. Place a piece of baking paper on your chopping board to prevent it from staining.
- Trim the root end and the leaves from your beets do not throw them away if they are fresh and unmarked they make a great salad on their own.
- Scrub your beets thoroughly under cold running water to remove all the dirt. As beets are grown in the ground they are quite often laden with dirt.
- Line a baking tray with a large piece of heavy-duty foil (a big enough piece so that I can tightly wrap my beets in them), then place the beets in the middle and drizzle them with some olive oil and season with some sea salt, cracked black pepper and the cardamom seeds.
- Tightly seal the foil this keeps them from drying out in the hot oven and helps them retain their own juices and stay tender.
You can, of course, wrap each beet individually, but they roast just as well if you place them together.
- Place them in your oven (the middle section of your). How long you roast your beets will depend on their size, how fresh they are (fresher cooks faster), how many beets there are and if you have anything else in your oven.
Your small beets could take half an hour and your larger ones could take an hour or more. Just start checking them after they have been in the oven for 20 minutes or so. Pierce them with a fork and when they feel soft and tender they are ready.
When done use your tongs to carefully unwrap them and allow them to cool before handling.
- To peel your roasted beets, you can wear gloves to avoid staining, then you could either rub them with your gloved hands, use kitchen paper to rub the skins off or use a small paring knife to peel the skins away. You will be surprised how easy it will be, I find it easier to just use my gloved hands, to be honest.
- Once peeled, you are ready to cut your roasted beets according to your recipe just don’t forget to do this on a lined chopping board to prevent nasty beet stains.
putting your roasted beet salad together
Once your beetroots have been roasted this salad comes together fairly quickly.
- Making your cardamom vinaigrette.
Add all your cardamom vinaigrette ingredients in a glass jar, season with some sea salt and cracked black paper.
Shake until it has emulsified, taste and adjust seasonings.
- Assemble the salad
Cut your roasted beetroots into small wedges on a chopping board that has been lined with baking paper.
Then place them into a large mixing bowl, with most of your chopped pistachios (keep ¼ cup to scatter on top as a garnish), pour over your cardamom vinaigrette, season with sea salt and cracked black pepper, mix well until combined. Taste and adjust seasonings according to your taste.
Arrange in a salad bowl, scatter with the reserved chopped pistachios to garnish, then chill until you are ready to serve.
Can I make roasted beet salad in advance?
- This roasted beet salad is great to make up to a week in advance, in fact, it will taste so much better if you do as the beets will absorb all the cardamom vinaigrette flavours to become beautifully vinegary and full of gorgeous cardamom flavour.
- Perfect to food prep for your lunches during the week as you can add some grains such as pearl barley or quinoa and some additional protein such as grilled chicken, roast beef or feta to make a substantial, lunch.
- Ideal to take to picnics or pot lucks as it travels so well without refrigeration.
- As the roasted beets can take a long time to cook, I will usually put some in the oven while I am making a roast as they are happy on their own and do not require too much attention. I will peel them when done and leave them covered in the fridge until I am ready to make the salad. Roasted beets can keep, in the fridge for approximately a week.
- You can also use the vacuum-packed beets that you find in the fruit and veg section of your supermarket for this salad. You will lose some of the sweet taste and some flavour but they are still good as they have been steamed whole and then sealed to retain their nutrients and freshness.
- Do not under any circumstances use tinned beets for this salad as they are high in sodium and have a briny taste that does not go well in this salad.
- This may seem like a lot of dressing, but the beetroots really need it so that they can soak up all the delicious flavours from the cardamom vinaigrette. Also, the bright red earthy beet juice with the cardamom vinaigrette make a sensational mix to dunk some fresh bread into!
Some more beet salad recipes to try:
(Times are an estimate and will depend on your skill level)
- 5-6 beets (bulbs) (approximately 1.5 kg)
- 1 cup chopped pistachios (approximately 140 grams)
- 1 ½ tbsp cardamom seeds
- Sea salt and cracked black pepper
- ½ cup olive oil
- ⅓ cup apple cider vinegar
- 3 tbsps lemon juice
- 2 tsps cardamom seeds
- 2 tsps cardamom powder
- 1 tbsp wholegrain mustard
- ¼ tsp sweetener (optional)
- Preheat your oven to 220°C (425°F).
- Trim your beets and scrub them thoroughly to remove all the dirt.
- Place a large piece of heavy duty foil on a baking tray (a big enough piece so that you can tightly wrap the beets in them) put the beets in the middle of the foil, drizzle them with some olive oil and season with some sea salt and cracked black pepper, add the cardamom seeds then tightly seal them.
- Place them in the middle section of your oven. Depending on their size they can take anything from 30 minutes to over an hour to cook. Start checking them after they have been in the oven for 20 minutes or so. Pierce them with a fork and when they feel soft and tender they are ready.
- When done take them out of your oven and carefully unwrap them with some tongs.
- Allow them to cool before handling, then peel them (you can wear gloves to avoid staining).
- Place a piece of baking paper on your chopping board to prevent staining and then cut them into small wedges.
- Put all your vinaigrette ingredients in a glass jar, season and shake until emulsified.
- Add all your ingredients to a mixing bowl, season with salt and pepper, pour over your dressing and mix well until combined. Taste and adjust seasonings.
- Arrange in a salad bowl and chill until ready to serve.