If you're looking for something light, nutritious, and delicious, look no further than this enchanting beet salad from Kelowna’s Hotel Eldorado Restaurant. Chef Best was looking for a way to combine seasonal vegetables with beets and he succeeded. This salad is a delight with a vinaigrette dressing made of citrus, tarragon, shallots, and extra virgin olive oil. It is served with goat cheese bonbons, blood oranges, pine nuts, fennel, and baby arugula.
The mild sweetness of the beets is in perfect balance with everything on the plate, no matter what combination finds its way into your mouth. The beets pair just as well with the arugula as they do with the blood oranges. The pine nuts and fennel add a depth to the flavours, without being overpowering. Although fennel can be a dominant flavour, Chef slices it just thin enough to pair perfectly with the roasted beets. The pine nuts add the perfect amount of nuttiness and crunch to this dish.
The favourite part of this dish for most is the goat cheese bonbons. They may look like a wonton, that's where the similarity ends. The pastry literally dissolves in your mouth leaving the warm, mild goat cheese free to flow across your taste buds.
This dish pairs best with a 2010 Blue Mountain Chardonnay. The lemony character and gentle oak of this wine compliment the citrus and the toasted pine nuts used in this salad. The delicate anise notes on the finish give the wine what it needs to hold its own against this flavourful light meal.
Chef de Cuisine, Justin Best is originally from New Brunswick and has worked in several fine dining restaurants in Nantucket, MA; Ottawa, ON; and Kananaskis, AB; as well as Eden at the Rimrock Resort in Banff, AB and the White Barn Inn in Kennebunkport, ME (two AAA five-diamond restaurants). Chef Best was the inspiration and creative force behind this featured dish.