Walnut Vinaigrette

walnut vinaigrette - trust in kim

When I was in France last summer I picked up a tube of walnut Dijon mustard. It isn’t something that is easy to find at home; in fact, I’ve never seen it, even in specialty stores, in Vancouver. Soon I will devise a recipe for it, so we won’t have to search for it anymore.

Here I’ve also used a walnut oil, just to bring out the nutty flavour. I love a combination of garlic and walnut, so I put in a clove of garlic. It needs to sit for a while, so you’ll need to make this a few hours in advance or the day before if you want to get that garlicky flavour in there.

What you need:

  • 1 tablespoon walnut Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 teaspoon sugar
  • 3 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar (or white wine vinegar)
  • 1/4 cup walnut oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 clove garlic

What you do:

  1. In a bowl or jar combine the mustard, sugar, and a little salt and pepper.
  2. Add a little bit of the vinegar to mix into the mustard, then add the rest, beating with a fork until combined.
  3. Add the walnut oil slowly, whisking in with the fork.
  4. Add more salt and pepper to taste.
  5. Peel the skin off the garlic clove, cut it in half and place it in the dressing. Let it sit for a few hours to allow the garlic flavour to be released. You can leave the garlic clove in the dressing for a week or two, or as long as it takes you to use it up.

Green Salad with Roasted Beets, Walnuts and Goat Cheese

roasted beet goat cheese and walnut salad - trust in kim

This is a beauty of a salad. You can use red beets, but as you can see, I chose to use golden beets this time. I love the combination of beets, goat cheese and walnuts with the shallot dressing. Roasting the beets ahead of time makes this a quick salad to put together at the last minute.

This recipe comes to us from The Vancouver Sun’s book The Best Salads.

You can buy cooked beets, but I prefer the taste of home-roasted beets. The original recipe asked you to slice and bake the beets. I roasted them whole instead.

I bought a beautiful Okanogan, BC goat cheese from Dussa’s at Granville Island, Vancouver for this salad.

What you need for the salad:

  • 1 tablespoon cider vinegar
  • 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper, or to taste
  • 2 tablespoons walnut oil
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped shallot

What you need for the salad:

  • 5 beets (1 & 1/4 pounds in total)
  • foil for cooking the beets
  • 4 cups salad greens
  • 1/2 cup toasted walnuts
  • 1/4 cup soft unripened goat cheese
  • salt and pepper

What you do:

  1. Roast the beets ahead of time, or early enough that they have time to cool down before using in the salad. Wash, then cover each beet in foil. Bake at 400F for about 50 minutes. Test with a sharp knife to see if they are soft all the way through. When the beets have cooled, peel the skins off. Refrigerate if you are making them ahead of time. Take them out of the fridge at least an hour before using, so they can come to room temperature.
  2. After the beets come out of the oven, turn the oven off and put the walnuts on a baking sheet in the oven. Check them after about 5 minutes to see how they are doing. Keep them in the oven until they are lightly toasted – beware, though – even with the oven off they can burn easily. Let them cool, then put them in an airtight container if you won’t be using them right away.
  3. Combine all the ingredients for the vinaigrette and let it sit for at least an hour. This can be made ahead and refrigerated.
  4. Toss the greens with some of the vinaigrette and arrange on large plates for serving. Slice the room temperature beets and arrange them on top, along with some goat cheese and walnuts. Add a little more vinaigrette to the top if you wish. Salt and pepper to taste if desired.

Enjoy!