Recipe: Beet Salad with Wasabi and Fried Capers

by Maggie Battista on January 3, 2008

in All Recipes, Vegetables


I found this recipe over at The Wednesday Chef last week. I was doing my usual searching for recipes for random vegetables leftover from my CSA. I had a pile, a HUGE pile of beets, that were about to kick me in the head for ignoring them for at least a week. Every day I’d open the fridge door, beets would be staring back at me from the crisper, wondering when the heck I would figure out what to do with them. I always roast beets with a little olive oil, salt and pepper. After a quick peel, I’d pile them on the dinner plate and go to town. But I wanted to treat these beets right. After all, they’d sat around for over a week and deserved a little respect.

When I stumbled across this recipe, I knew the beets would be done justice. I love salty, briny capers and hot, hot horseradish. I love to make a creamy horseradish sauce to smother my medium-rare beef tenderloin on special occasions. However, when I opened my fridge to gather all the necessary ingredients, I discovered we had used up all the horseradish. Wait though, I did have a little Wasabi paste. Wasabi is made from horseradish, right? Perfect.

I simply served this on a large platter with two forks. My husband poured two glasses of Layer Cake Shiraz and we dug in. It was only a first course, but very filling. He hates many vegetables, but loved this dish.

Beet Salad with Wasabi and Fried Capers
Recipe Adapated from The Wednesday Chef

  • 1 1/2 pounds small beets, trimmed and scrubbed
  • Olive oil, for beets and frying capers
  • 1/4 cup of grape seed oil (I ran out of olive oil, and used grape seed)
  • 2 tablespoons salt-packed or brined capers
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons Wasabi paste, more to taste
  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon low-fat plain yogurt (I didn’t have sour cream)
  • Sea salt to taste

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees (325 if you use a convection oven). Place beets on half of a large piece of aluminum foil. Drizzle with a tablespoon of olive oil. Fold the foil and seal the edges. Lay package on a baking sheet and place it in the oven. Roast until beets are tender, 45 to 60 minutes. (Test by poking a fork through the foil into a beet.) Remove from the oven. Be careful when opening the foil; steam will race out. While still warm, peel beets, then slice into wedges and place in a bowl.

2. Soak salt-packed capers for 10 minutes, drain, rinse, then pat dry. (If using brined capers, drain and pat dry.) Pour 1/2 inch olive oil into a small saucepan over medium-high heat. When oil is hot enough to toast a bread crumb in 30 seconds, add capers. Be careful; oil may sputter. Fry until capers fluff and begin to brown on edges, 30 to 60 seconds. Drain on paper towels.

3. In a small bowl, whisk together mustard, wasabi paste and vinegar. Whisk in 1/4 cup oil, followed by sour cream. Pour half the dressing over beets; mix. Taste, adding more dressing or salt, if needed. Spoon on beets a platter and sprinkle with fried capers.

Maggie Battista

Founder at Eat Boutique
Maggie, is the founder of Eat Boutique. She started Eat Boutique as a blog in 2007, and sold out of her first gift box of small batch independent food in 2009. Maggie continues to offer unique and delicious handmade food in tasting subscriptions and seasonal gift boxes for food fans and home cooks. Maggie also hosts Eat Boutique Markets, where she spotlights cookbook authors and food makers. She’s written for Style Me Pretty, Food52, Time Out New York, Spencer Magazine, and writes a cocktail column for the popular wedding blog, Snippet & Ink. Maggie's also created retail experiences for the largest floral and event design company in New England. She regularly travels far distances to find the next great chef, farmer, food maker or host. You can follow her worldwide – and homemade – gastronomic adventures on Twitter at @mizmaggieb or @eatboutique. Maggie's first-ever cookbook Food Gift Love will be published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt in October 2015. You may pre-order now.

  • kitchenmom

    I’m always looking at beets at the end of the week wondering what to do with them before my next CSA box arrives! I can’t wait to try this recipe, I love horseradish.

  • Suzana

    I love beets but never thought of adding capers. I’ll have to try it – sounds delicious!

  • Mindy

    Hmm… I’ve always been suspect of beets. Yes, I’ve heard they’re good for you – but I just start thinking borscht and it’s all over. BUT – this recipe has enticed me back to reconsider the beet, now I just have to get my boyfriend on the beet bandwagon…

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