Maple Roasted Salmon with Winter Beets, Ricotta and Dill

Holiday 2008
food and drink

Although red beets taste excellent, use golden beets for this recipe if available because their colour does not bleed on to the cheese. Treadwell uses verjus, a juice made from grape must, but it is hard to obtain. He suggested sherry or banyuls vinegar as a good substitute. He deep-fries his own beet chips but we bought a package of vegetable chips and used the beet ones.

4 salmon fillets, 3 oz (90 g) each
¼ cup (50 mL) good quality maple syrup
1 lb (500 g) golden beets
2 tbsp (25 mL) olive oil
Salt and freshly ground pepper
¼ cup (50 mL) verjus or sherry vinegar
1 tbsp (15 mL) lemon juice
2 tbsp (25 mL) chopped dill
4 oz (125 g) Upper Canada Cheese Co.’s ricotta
Beet chips
Chervil sprigs

1. Cover salmon with maple syrup. Leave to marinate for 1 hour in the fridge.

2. Preheat oven to 350ºF (180ºC).

3. Clean beets, toss with 1 tbsp (15 mL) olive oil and season with salt. Wrap in tinfoil, place on a baking sheet and bake for 1 hour or until fork tender.

4. Increase oven temperature to 450ºF (230ºC).

5. Combine sherry vinegar, lemon juice and remaining 1 tbsp (15 mL) olive oil and season with salt and pepper.

6. Allow beets to cool enough to handle, peel, dice and toss with half of dressing. Allow to cool, then stir in chopped dill.

7. Remove salmon from syrup and pat dry. Season with salt and pepper.

8. Cover a baking sheet with foil, place salmon on and roast for 4 to 5 minutes, then broil for 1 to 2 minutes or until top is golden and salmon is just cooked through.

9. Divide beet salad between 4 plates. Dot with ricotta and top with salmon. Spoon a touch of the remaining dressing around plate and garnish with deep-fried beet chips and some chervil sprigs.

Serves 4