This blog post has everything to do with getting over past food hatred and the amazing combinations you can discover after drinking too much Riesling.
First off - conquering food hatred. Pickled beets. I didn't even try them when I was a kid, the look of them was enough to make me declare that there was NO way that I would EVER like pickled beets. And my mom didn't argue with me. I now know that this was her way of keeping pickled beets to herself. (Smart lady.)
Fast forward over 15 years and a fateful stop at one of the Amish roadside stands near Harmony, Minnesota. I picked up a plethora of canned goods on my way to see my folks and remembered my mom's love of pickled beets - so I grabbed a jar. And then I tried them. And it was one of those life altering experiences that defy conventional powers of description. So I won't attempt to tell you how wonderful they taste - they just are. And these days, there is always a jar of pickled beets in my fridge.
A couple weekends ago, under the influence of some really good Riesling and good times with some friends, I discovered my new favorite sandwich - toasted baguette with some softened goat cheese and pickled beets.
OK, so wait - before you take off to the hills before getting this recipe because you think that beets taste like dirt, there's one technique I need to impart with you, because I didn't believe it worked until I tried it ... it is rubbing a baguette (or any bread for that matter ...) with pieces of crushed garlic. I never believed that such a weird technique could impart such flavor, but it really works and is essential if you're toasting up some baguette rounds.
Anyway - here's how to make my new favorite sandwich ...
French baguette - rubbed with crushed garlic (one clove for each side) and toasted in a 375-degree oven
Goat cheese, about 2 oz., softened and spread on toasted baguette halves
Sliced pickle beets, drained on some paper towels
Fresh cracked black pepper
Arugula or romaine (**Not shown up above)
Toast bread. After it is out of the oven, spread with goat cheese. Sprinkle black pepper on top of goat cheese. Place beet rounds on bread. Top with other baguette. Eat, enjoy.