This vibrant starter is, like many of the best of things, quite simple. It lets you focus on the intensity of the beetroot without masking any flavors. Try not to be alarmed by the large amount of garlic in the dish, it will caramelize beautifully in the oven and turn into sweet, chewy, and utterly irresistible goodness. Yogurt and tahini provide creaminess and richness. But most importantly, the roasted beetroot will give you a flavor and color that you will dream about for days.
Because sometimes we need to see our surroundings with new eyes; see beautiful things in the less obvious of places, bring more color into our lives, and savor the present the best we can.
INGREDIENTS/ SERVES 4 AS A STARTER
4 medium beetroots/ 720 gr., peeled and cubed
8 large garlic cloves
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 cup plain or Greek yogurt
1/4 cup/4 tablespoons tahini paste
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 teaspoons pomegranate molasses
1/2 teaspoon salt
1. Preheat oven to 200 C/ 400 F. Place the olive oil, beetroot, and garlic in a large roasting pan and toss together. Roast for 30 minutes, while tossing one or two times. Place the roasted beetroot and garlic in a plate and leave to cool for at least 15 minutes before pulsing in the food processor.
2. Mix together the yogurt and tahini in a small bowl until smooth, whisk in the lemon juice, pomegranate molasses, and salt, and set aside. Blitz the beetroot and garlic in a high powered food processor until it forms a smooth paste. Add the yogurt mixture and blitz again until well combined.
3. Serve in a large plate or shallow bowl and top with plenty of olive oil, toasted pine nuts, pomegranate seeds, and chopped parsley. If you are making this in advance, keep refrigerated and add the toppings before serving.
If you need this to be free of dairy, replace the yogurt with dairy-free yogurt or alternatively, combine the 4 tablespoons of tahini with 2 tablespoons of lemon juice and stir until thick. Then stream in 2-3 tablespoons of unsweetened almond milk or water until the mixture is creamy. Stir in the salt and add to beetroot mixture.