This Mandarin Beet Salad with Poppyseed Dressing makes for an easy and delicious winter lunch!
As sad as I am to put away the holiday decorations each year, I’m equally as excited to get the new year started. There’s a whole year ahead! (Well, maybe a whole year minus a couple of weeks…but you get the point.) And one of my favorite things about the beginning of the year is the New York Times’ Places to Visit. The list includes 52 fun and unique places to explore…and 2017 has some really good places on the list! In reverse order, here are just a couple of places that stood out to me on this year’s list:
#50 Budapest, Hungary
- I keep hearing amazing things about Hungary! It was never on my list, but after popping up in several conversations this past year (and now the NY Times list, too), I think I need to check out Budapest. Plus, I really want to eat some authentic goulash.
#31 Napa Valley, CA
- So Napa isn’t a secret at all, but I’m still on board! I got a chance to visit Napa last year, and I want to take Laura back sometime soon. Plus, Napa apparently has an up-and-coming brewery scene. I know it would be strange to go to Napa and visit a brewery…but I’m game!
#12 Greenville, SC
- Woah! Seriously? My grandparents lived in upstate South Carolina, and I grew up spending summers at their house out in the country. Greenville was only ~45 minutes from where they lived. But Greenville has apparently become super trendy lately. Laura travels to Greenville for work 1-2 times a year, and she’s been telling me how awesome downtown Greenville is. And now that it’s on the NY Times list? That’s legit! (Plus, Sean Brock is opening his 3rd location of Husk there in the coming months. Laura and I ate at Husk in Charleston…and then we promptly went back for lunch the next day. It was that good!)
#6 Dubrovnik, Croatia
- Like Budapest, I keep hearing awesome things about Croatia. That photo of Dubrovnik looks amazing! That, and I’m a huge sucker for all things European history. Also worth noting: Dubrovnik is the setting for King’s Landing of Game of Thrones fame. I am a huge Game of Thrones fan, so clearly this is fate.
- Awesome! I love how most of the other places on the list are cities/regions, but Canada is just Canada. Either way, I couldn’t agree more! We live just 2 hours from the Canadian border, and we’ve ventured over to Montreal for a weekend trip. I loved it! I really do want to explore the rest of Canada. Oh, and I want to see a moose. (I’m sure my Canadian friends are yelling, “Finally…some respect!” at their computer screens right now…)
Speaking of travel and places to visit, I have to point out a fun game that Halo’s mandarins is running right now. Halo’s are one of our favorite winter fruits, and this year they have collectible state stickers on ’em. Collect all 50 states to win a fun prize! Be it old Nintendo games, baseball cards or dust buffalo under the couch, you guys know how I love collecting things! I’ve printed out the Halo’s map, and I’m slowly filling in all those stickers.
Laura and I try to eat a piece of fruit every day for lunch. In the winter, we usually keep pears and Halo’s on hand. Halo’s are (a) delicious and (b) easy to peel…thus making them the perfect fruit for a quick lunch. But I decided to go one step further and make this Mandarin Beet Salad with Poppyseed Dressing using some of the Halo’s in our fridge.
Laura loves beets, and I love goat cheese…so the combination here was perfect for both of us. Oh, and I also included a quick and easy poppyseed dressing. This Mandarin Beet Salad with Poppyseed Dressing has made for some really awesome lunches this past week!
I used canned beats for this salad just to keep it nice and easy, but feel free to roast your own. I’m sure it would be delicious! I did, however, brush those canned beets with a bit of olive oil and lemon juice and toss ’em into a grill pan. I really like the juxtaposition of the warm beets and pecans with the cold mandarins and goat cheese. But no matter how you do it, the flavors will be delicious!
Check out the Halo’s blog for more fun ideas using Halo’s…like saving the rinds, drying them on a sheet pan and then tossing them into your winter fire. How fun is that!?
Mandarin Beet Salad with Poppyseed Dressing
For the Salad
- ½ cup pecans halved
- 1 15-oz. can sliced beets, drained and patted dry
- ½ Tbsp olive oil
- ½ Tbsp lemon juice
- 8 oz. baby spinach
- 3 mandarin oranges peeled and split into wedges
- ¼ cup red onion sliced
- ½ cup goat cheese crumbled
For the Poppyseed dressing
- ⅓ cup white wine vinegar
- 2 Tbsp granulated sugar
- 1 Tbsp onion grated on coarse grater
- 2 tsp Dijon mustard
- ½ tsp salt
- 1 Tbsp poppyseeds
- ½ cup olive oil
For the Salad
- Using a dry skillet, toast the pecan halves over medium heat, stirring often, for 4-5 minutes.
- Meanwhile, place a sauté or grill pan over medium-high heat. Brush the beets with the olive oil and lemon juice. Place beets in a preheated pan and cook for 5-6 minutes.
- Arrange spinach on a large plate.
- Top with beets, mandarin oranges, red onion, goat cheese and toasted pecans.
- Drizzle top of salad lightly with Poppyseed Dressing.
For the Poppyseed Dressing
- Using a medium bowl, add white wine vinegar, sugar, onion, mustard, salt and poppyseeds; stir until well combined.
- Add oil in a slow steam, whisking constantly while pouring. Continue whisking until well combined.
- Store leftover dressing in an air-tight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks. Before using, shake well to recombine.
Disclaimer: I am a member of #TeamHalos, but I did not receive compensation for this Mandarin Beet Salad with Poppyseed Dressing post. The recipe and opinions are entirely my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Spiced!