This traditional Slavic beet salad is called vinegret. I came up with this version of the recipe when I ran out of red beets and fresh onions. I found a few golden beets and a jar of pickled red onions in my fridge, and I decided to give it a go. The salad came out so vibrant and beautiful that now I make this version more often than the traditional one. The only thing I would never change is the unrefined sunflower oil. That is what makes this salad taste authentic.
Serves 6 to 8
- 3 medium golden beets
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 3 medium carrots
- 2 large Yukon Gold potatoes
- 1 cup shelled green peas (fresh or frozen)
- 5 large kosher dill pickles
- 1/2 cup Pickled Red Onion
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh dill and flat-leaf parsley, in equal parts
- 1/3 cup unrefined sunflower oil
- 2 teaspoons red wine vinegar
- 1/4 teaspoon sugar
In a medium saucepan, combine the beets with water to cover by about 2 inches and a pinch of salt. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat and cook until the beets can be easily pierced with a knife, 30 to 40 minutes. In a separate medium saucepan, cook the carrots and potatoes using the same method. When the vegetables are ready, drain them, transfer them to a medium bowl, and let them cool to room temperature, about 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, bring a small saucepan filled with water to a boil. Fill a small bowl with ice-cold water. Season the boiling water with a pinch of salt, then add the peas and blanch until they are bright green and no longer taste starchy, about 2 minutes. Drain the peas and immerse them in the ice-cold water until they are completely cool, 3 to 5 minutes. Drain the peas and spread them on a paper towel to dry.
When the beets, potatoes, and carrots are at room temperature, peel them, cut them into 1/4-inch cubes, and transfer them to a large bowl. Cut the pickles and pickled onion into the same-size cubes and add them to the bowl along with the peas, dill, and parsley.
In a small bowl, mix together the oil, vinegar, and sugar with a fork, then season to taste with salt and pepper . Drizzle as much of the dressing as you like over the salad; you may not need all of it. Mix well with a large spoon, then taste and add more dressing and salt if needed.
Enjoy the salad at room temperature or chilled. It will keep in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days .