A few years ago, when I couldn’t sleep in the middle of the night, I stumbled across Sarala Terpstra’s absolutely beautiful Instagram account featuring veganized, classic French recipes. Since then, we’ve struck up a virtual friendship through Instagram messages, she has published two cookbooks (I highly recommend both of them) and moved to a small village in the French countryside.
This recipe is from her first cookbook, “Vegan French Favorites” (more on the book here). I’ve tried several beet tartare recipes in the past few years and hers is by far the simplest and the most delicious (all of her recipes are simple and easy and taste amazing). If you don’t follow her yet, treat yourself and head over to @saralaterpstra on Instagram.
This is a beautiful dish both to serve and to prepare, especially if you have some sunlight streaming in to light up the ruby red beets. They take on a jewel-like quality when the light shines through them, and when garnished with bright green parsley you have a vibrant, decadently delicious dish.
Sarala Terpstra's Beet Tartare
4 large beets (or 8 small)
1 ripe avocado
1 shallot or quarter onion, finely chopped (I prefer the shallot, personally)
2 tablespoons fresh parsley, finely chopped
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon hot sauce (Tabasco or Frank’s work well)
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
4 cornichons, minced (I’ve never included these mainly because I’ve never had them on hand when making this but I’m sure they’re delicious when added)
2 cloves garlic, pressed
A handful of fresh parsley, minced
Salt and black pepper to taste
Cut the greens from the beets within an inch of the beet top. Rinse the beets and cover with water. Simmer, covered, for 30-45 minutes depending on their size. Once cool, trim the tops and bottoms, rub off the skin (I recommend gloves for this) and chop. Process a quarter of the chopped beets and all of the avocado until smooth and uniform in color. Add this purée to a bowl with the remaining ingredients and stir until well mixed. Spoon into a small teacup, bowl or mold, then unmold and serve. You can also make this a day ahead and keep it in the fridge to mold just before serving.
If you make this, I'd love to know how you like it. Please feel free to leave a comment.