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Recipe: 'Russian' potato, beet and carrot salad, from Vietnam

Here's another recipe that Jeff Meyers makes for his family's Tet feast, as featured in today's Buffalo News.

Russian Beet, Potato, and Carrot Salad

3 beets, stems trimmed with about ½ inch intact (about 1 ¼ pounds after trimming)
2 tablespoons cider vinegar, red wine vinegar, or white wine vinegar
Salt
1 shallot,finely chopped, rinsed under water, and well drained (about ¼ cup)
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh herbs such as dill, mint, parsley, and/or tarragon
Dressing
4 ½ tablespoons cider vinegar, red wine vinegar, or white wine vinegar
¼ cup canola or other neutral oil
¼ cup mayonnaise, preferably whole egg
¾ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon black pepper
salt
2 large carrots, 8 to 10 ounces total, peeled and cut into ½-inch dice
3 or 4 white or red boiling potatoes, about 1 ¼ pounds total, cut into ½-inch dice.
3 eggs, hard boiled, peeled and chopped
1. Position a rack in the middle of the oven and preheat to 400 degrees F. Place the beets in a baking dish and add water just to cover the bottom of the dish. Cover tightly with aluminum foil and bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until easily pierced with a knife. (A covered ovenproof saucepan may be used instead; if the pan has a heavy bottom, heat the pan on the stove top until the water simmers before putting it in the oven.) Remove from the oven, uncover, and let cool.
2. When the beets are cool enough to handle, cut off the stems and root ends and use your fingertips to slip off the skin. Cut each beet into ½-inch dice and put into a small bowl. Toss with the vinegar and season lightly with salt. Set aside for at least 15 minutes tolet the flavors develop.
3. Meanwhile, make the dressing. In a bowl large enough to accommodate the finished salad, whisk together the vinegar, oil, mayonnaise, salt and pepper. Add the shallot and herbs and stir to mix. Set aside near the stove.
4. Bring a saucepan filled with salted water to a rolling boil and add the carrots. When the water returns to a boil, cook the carrots for 5 to 7 minutes, or until tender but still moderately firm. Using a slotted spoon or skimmer, lift out the carrots, shake briefly over the pan to drain off excess water, and then add to the bowl holding the dressing.
5. Return the water to a rolling boil. While the water is heating up, put the potatoes in a large bowl and fill with cold water. Stir the potatoes with your hand and pour out the cloudly water. Repeat until the water is clear. Drain the potatoes well and add to the boiling water. When the water returns to a boil, cook the potatoes for 4 to 6 minutes, or until tender but still moderately firm. Drain well in a colander and, while still hot, add to the bowl holding the carrots and dressing and toss well.
6. Add the beets and egg and toss again. Taste and add extra salt and pepper, if necessary. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate to chill thoroughly before serving.

(From “Into the Vietnamese Kitchen,” by Andrea Nguyen, Ten Speed Press)

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Food and Drink
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