There's no shortage of little bites, known as zakuski, at Russian parties. The idea is to awaken your palate, to make you hungry for the meal to come. One of my favorites is this intensely garlicky beet salad. The original concept is rather simple: grated beets, lots of garlic, mayonnaise, salt and pepper. I'm sure there are variations on a theme, but you get the idea. The garlic is potent, but not abrasive, and I mellowed it out a bit by adding some lemon juice and zest, dates, and chopped walnuts. I also blended sour cream with mayonnaise for a more luxurious feel.
Recipe courtesy of Olga Massov
Garlicky Beet Salad with Walnuts and Dates
Yield:
Serves 8 to 10 as a side dish
Level:
None
Yield:
Serves 8 to 10 as a side dish
Level:
None

Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 pounds beets, preferably organic
  • 1/2 cup walnuts, chopped
  • 7 large garlic cloves, mashed into a paste
  • 6 medjool dates, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons sour cream or Greek yogurt
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste
  • Zest of 1 lemon, preferably organic
  • Juice of 1 lemon

Directions

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F with the rack in the middle. Trim and halve the beets lengthwise, and place in a 13-by-9-inch roasting pan. Fill with enough water so it comes halfway up the sides, cover the top tightly with foil and roast the beets for 30 to 40 minutes (depending on beets' size), until fork-tender. Remove from the oven, let cool, and slip the skins off. Using the coarsest setting on the food processor or the hand grater, shred the beets. In a large bowl, toss the beets with the remaining ingredients and mix until well-combined. Taste and adjust seasonings accordingly, if needed. Serve immediately or refrigerate.

IDEAS YOU'LL LOVE

Beet Salad

Roasted Beet Salad

Recipe courtesy of Kelsey Nixon

Beet and Apple Salad

Recipe courtesy of Michael Symon

Roasted Beet Salad

Recipe courtesy of Haylie Duff

Beet Root Salad

Citrus Beet Salad

Recipe courtesy of Ingrid Hoffmann

Beautiful Beet Salad

Recipe courtesy of Siba Mtongana

Local Beet Salad

Cooking Tips

How to Poach Eggs Perfectly

Watch videos from Cooking Channel shows and chefs. Learn to prepare feature recipes and relive your favorite moments

On TV

Cupcake Wars

10am | 9c

Cupcake Wars

11am | 10c

Cupcake Wars

12pm | 11c

Cupcake Wars

1pm | 12c

Cheap Eats

2pm | 1c

Cheap Eats

2:30pm | 1:30c

Cheap Eats

3pm | 2c

Cheap Eats

3:30pm | 2:30c

Cheap Eats

4pm | 3c

Cheap Eats

4:30pm | 3:30c

Cheap Eats

5pm | 4c

Cheap Eats

5:30pm | 4:30c

Cheap Eats

6pm | 5c

Cheap Eats

6:30pm | 5:30c

Man Fire Food

7:30pm | 6:30c
On Tonight
On Tonight

Man Fire Food

8pm | 7c

Man Fire Food

8:30pm | 7:30c

Man Fire Food

9:30pm | 8:30c

Burgers, Brew & 'Que

10:30pm | 9:30c

Good Eats

11pm | 10c

Good Eats

11:30pm | 10:30c

Man Fire Food

12am | 11c

Man Fire Food

12:30am | 11:30c

Man Fire Food

1am | 12c

Man Fire Food

1:30am | 12:30c

Burgers, Brew & 'Que

2:30am | 1:30c

Good Eats

3am | 2c

Good Eats

3:30am | 2:30c