Photo by Peden + Munk
This is a really, really exceptional dish that always blows people’s minds. Nut oils have that same combination of earthy and sweet as root vegetables, which makes them the dream team, and then the oil has all that extra fat and richness that’s just delicious. I top this off with burrata, which might seem like a cop-out because adding burrata to things is like adding caviar—it’s cheating a little bit—but the creaminess against the roasted veg is just out of this world. And it doesn’t necessarily need the ooze factor, so you could use fresh mozzarella instead. Could you just add the cheese to the roasted roots along with some marinated kale? Yeah. Would it be unique? Yeah. But the whole extra step of searing the beets and kale and pouring them right from the pan onto a platter? Next level.
If you’ve already roasted and marinated the beets, you could marinate the kale on its own, then sear everything together.
- 6 servings
- Marinated Kale:
- 1/4 cup grated Pecorino or Parmigiano cheese
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- Zest and juice of 1 lemon
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1⁄2 teaspoon honey
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon crushed red chile flakes
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1 large bunch black Tuscan kale, ribs removed and coarsely chopped
- Hazelnut Vinaigrette:
- 1/4 heaping cup hazelnuts, toasted in a skillet over medium heat until fragrant and then finely ground
- 3 tablespoons hazelnut oil
- 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
- 1 teaspoon finely chopped shallot
- 1 teaspoon minced thyme leaves
- 1/2 teaspoon honey
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 3 cranks black pepper
- To finish:
- Roasted and marinated beets
- 2 balls burrata or fresh mozzarella cheese, torn into rough chunks
- Kosher salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1/2 cup coarsely chopped toasted hazelnuts
- Marinate the Kale:
- In a large bowl, combine the cheese, olive oil, lemon zest and juice, garlic, honey, salt, chile flakes, and pepper. Add the kale and toss to combine—really get in there and work the kale with your hands; this isn’t a gentle massage. Set the kale aside to marinate at room temperature for 2 hours or in the fridge overnight. Alternatively, you could toss the kale in with the just-roasted, marinating beets along with the cheese, olive oil, et al., and let the mixture sit at room temperature for 2 hours or in the fridge overnight. They’ll marinate just the same.
- Make the Vinaigrette:
- Combine the hazelnuts, hazelnut oil, vinegar, shallot, thyme, honey, salt, and pepper in a small jar with a tight-fitting lid and shake it until the dressing comes together. Set aside until ready to serve or store in the fridge for up to 5 days.
- Char the Kale and Beets:
- Preheat a large cast-iron pan over high heat for 5 minutes. When the pan looks very hot (you see little wisps of smoke), add the marinated beets and char on one side for 1 minute, just long enough to get some char. Remove the beets from the pan and add the kale, again charring for 1 minute. You are looking to just heat the kale, not fully cook it. You also could do this over the high heat of a grill. Remove the pan from the heat.
- Put it together and serve:
- Spread the cheese over a large platter. Season it a bit with salt and pepper. Scatter the charred kale and beets over the cheese, douse with the hazelnut vinaigrette, and finish with the chopped hazelnuts
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