cheese, glorious cheese

Mmmmmmmmmmmm, cheese.

I’ve been a vegetarian for over 3 years now, sometimes dabbling in veganism. But what brings me back is always the cheese. I don’t know if I can live without it. Yes, there are some decent vegan cheeses out there, but they can not live up to the glorious, delicious, drool-inducing flavors of goat cheese, for instance. Or brie. Oh my gosh, brie.

My husband and I recently subscribed to a CSA (community supported agriculture.) I was super excited to get new vegetables and try new recipes. When we started it a few weeks ago, though, we were on a break from cheese. We both decided we had been eating a wee bit too much, and a break from dairy was needed.

But then we got beets in our box, and my goodness, so many people recommended eating those suckers on a baguette, shmeared with goat cheese, and a bit of olive oil. Maybe some arugula. YUM.

But we were on a cheese break. So, I found a recipe for roasted beets. I roasted them. I tried them (for the first time ever) just on their own, with a little salt. I was seriously not looking forward to eating that beet. I don’t know what it is, but the crazy intense red, counter staining, finger staining, everything staining color, grosses me out. I reluctantly ate a piece…. and I kind of liked it. I mean, it was not bad. But then I didn’t know what to do with all of them. The rest of the beets sat in my fridge uneaten for awhile, until hubby concocted some recipe with them involving quinoa and avocado. I also very (very) reluctantly ate that, because it was all red and gross looking! It was ok.

Well, the beets are back. And hallelujah, we are NOT on a cheese break any longer. So I decided to roast up some beets, and go crazy with the goat cheese on some crusty baguette.

Roasting beets is super simple. Take some beets and rip off the stems & leaves. You can save the leaves if you like and cook with those. I just compost mine, because I have enough kale & lettuce in my CSA box that I don’t need any more leafy greens to worry about going bad.

You might want to rinse/scrub the beets to get rid of any dirt. Take a large piece of aluminum foil and stick the beets on there. Drizzle some olive oil over them, and fold the foil up over the beets to make a little packet. Stick them in the oven at 375F and wait 30-60 minutes, depending on the size of the beets. Shorter time for smaller beets, longer for big ones. They’re done when you can stick a fork in them and they feel soft.

Once they’re out, wait for them to cool. I then use a paper towel to rub off the skin. You can leave the skin on, though. Either way, you’re gonna get pink fingers, and probably pink stains on your cutting board. Once the skin is off, and the ends are cut off, slice them up.

Serve on a crusty sliced bread, like a baguette. I toasted my baguette in the oven, sliced it up, spread goat cheese on each piece and drizzled with olive oil. Then I added the beets on top. OK, so I know this picture is horrid. Please, forgive me for the awful lighting. Also, I admit this doesn’t look this appetizing. The beets look like weird pepperonis. But I wanted to have at least one picture in my post. I promise for better, more aesthetically pleasing & appetizing pictures next time.

I must say, it was pretty tasty. There’s nothing better than cheese and bread. Oh, right, beets too. The beet and goat cheese flavors worked well together, but I have to admit I liked a little more goat cheese and a little less beet. If beets keep coming in our CSA boxes, I’ll keep making this recipe. Buuuut, I probably wouldn’t be too likely to go buy beets on my own. Meh. Nevertheless, if you want to have a good first experience with a beet, I’d say this is the way to go. Thank goodness for cheese.

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