Beet Tartare with Cashew Cheese
June 6, 2013

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One of the highlights of my recent Portland dining adventures was the beet tartare at Portobello: finely chopped and lightly dressed beets served on top of a pillow of creamy cashew cheese. I thought the it was an ingenious recipe idea, and it was a delicious appetizer. When beets arrived in my Relay Bounty Box last week, it felt like fate. It was time to recreate beet tartare at home.

This recipe is very simple. As soon as you roast the beets, all you need to do is chop them finely and dress them with a little olive oil, lemon, sea salt, and pepper. To roast beets, I like to trim them, wrap them in foil, and then roast them in an oven set to 400 degrees Fahrenheit for 40-50 minutes, or until they’re tender enough for a knive to cut through them easily. If you’d rather not use foil, you can roast them in a dutch oven with a little water at the bottom for that period of time.

After they emerge from the oven, you can run the beets under cold water and easily slip off the skins. It’s that simple!

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Beet Tartare with Cashew Cheese (vegan, gluten free, soy free)

Author -

Ingredients

  • For the tartare:
  • 5 small beets of 4 medium
  • 1 1/2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • For the cashew cheese:
  • 1 1/2 cups cashews soaked overnight and drained
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1 clove garlic minced (optional)
  • Black pepper to taste
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1/3-1/2 cup water

Instructions

  • 1. Preheat an oven to 400 degrees. Trim the tops and ends off the beets, wrap them in tin foil (or place them in a Dutch oven with a few inches of water at the bottom) and roast for 40-50 minutes, or until very fork tender. Rinse under cold water and slip skins off. Set aside.
  • 2. To make the cashew cheese, put cashews in a food processor fitted with the S blade. Add salt, garlic, pepper, and lemon, and pulse to combine. Allow the motor to run, and drizzle in water in a thin stream, stopping frequently to scrape the bowl down. Use just enough water to attain a creamy, but not liquidy, texture.
  • 3. Rinse the food processor and dry it. Add the beets and use the S blade to pulse them until they're finely chopped. Whisk together the mustard, vinegar, oil, and salt. Transfer beets to a small bowl and toss with the dressing.
  • 4. Layer a large, pancake shaped layer of cashew cheese on a serving plate (reserve the rest for wraps, salad, pasta, etc.). Pile beet tartare on top. Serve, with toast or other dippers.

I served my tartare with Ezekiel sprouted grain bread, which I’d toasted and cut into squares, but you can serve it with raw flax crackers, raw veggies, a brown rice tortilla, or any other bread/dipper of choice. It’s an easy, impressive appetizer. You don’t even have to make the cashew cheese with it; the beets can stand alone!

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I have one more Vida Vegan recap coming to you soon, as well as a scrumptious spring salad. Happy (almost) weekend.

xo

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    40 Comments
  1. We will be missing Portobello but I’m so happy to have found this recipe. I just made it and my daughter asked me if I had made the tartare and I said, “Yes”. She said, “This is better than Portobello!” Music to my ears. I omitted the oil and you can’t even tell, in my opinion.

  2. Hi Gena!

    THANKS for all the wonderful recipes, we, vegan/raw family, are true fans! This recipe made with raw beets, what do You think? Could it function?

    Annika & Co. 😉

    • I definitely think it could work — but you may want to let the beets marinate for a while, so that they’re tender before you eat them. Enjoy it!

  3. I just made this twice in two weeks. Once for myself and roommate and another for a potluck. A potluck at Araon’s, the owner of Portobella! He even liked it! I enjoyed it myself and so did everyone else that tried it.

    • Lynntofu, any chance you could ask Dinae to share her recipe too? (not to steal Gena’s thunder of course) 🙂 I used another recipe for cashew cheese (cuz I didn’t see Gena’s until today) and am going to try out this one for the beet part. I’ll let you know how it goes.

  4. I made this last night. It was so delicious! Not exactly like Portabellos, but very close. I can imagine this would be great not only on bread and crackers, but also on salad. Btw, it made A LOT!

  5. Great to see another beet for meat recipe. The other was a lovely carpaccio appetizer. Are the cashews raw? I’ve heard there was a toxic element in raw vs roasted.

  6. I love your Ezekiel bread, and your raw apple crackers, and your cashew cheese, and your couch, and even though by the time I went to try this tartare there was none left, I love your beet tartare. But most of all, I love you, and not just ’cause it’s your birthday. Happy birthday dearest one.

  7. Oh my, I fear this dish may become like crack for me. Roasted beets and cashew cheese – together? I’m doomed…in the best possible way 🙂

  8. Gena…I’ve had this dish at Portobello and it was amazing. I am so happy you tried it and recreated it here. Looking forward to making it!

  9. This looks yummy. So that’s why I bought beets this week at the market… Would a little nooch add something to the cheese element, or would that be overkill for the pure, clean flavours? Definitely on my kitchen to do list.

    Kate

  10. Beetroots are great juiced – i add one raw one to about 10 raw carrots and stuff them through my champion 2000 juicer. Not to forget 3 medium sized Pink Lady apples for a bit of sweetness. Drink within ten minutes whilst it is still fresh, or pop in an air-tight flask and keep in the fridge until ready to drink. Mmmmm did i just give away one of my longevity secrets? ! 🙂

  11. Wow this looks amazing. Pink hands be damned, I love roasted beets and your recipe sounds like it would be delicious on a salad too.

  12. you can barely see the cheese! (next time use a darker plate) hehe 🙂

    thanks for this great recipe!

  13. Bravo! That was one of my favorite dishes from our fabulous dinner with you in PDX! So glad you recreated it!

  14. Not going to lie; it doesn’t look all that appetizing 😛

    However, I do love beets AND cashews, so maybe I’ll give it a try!

    Thanks for sharing!
    Peace&love

  15. This looks divine, and so elegant! Beetroot is made to be paired with something creamy. One of my favourite side dishes is a scrummy beetroot tahini salad.

  16. This sounds like the best possible way to eat beets! I usually go for goat cheese with beets, but the cashew cheese combination is so obviously a great choice too. Hooray!

  17. OH MY GAWD that looks ridiculously good!!! thanks for the recipe I love beets…oh and cashew cream

  18. eden serves an incredible tartare as well here in pgh! they cut huge chunks of cashew cheese to serve on the side as dippers. /amazing i’ve never been to portland but i think i’d love it there! it’s on my short list for sure!

  19. Hi Gena. What a different recipe but sounds amazing. Why do you need to soak cashews overnight?
    Growing up we used to eat beets a lot but we would boil them. Cheap and healthy, especially if organic.
    Toasted sprouted bread is so high end!!!