- 1kg mixed beets, leaves trimmed
- 200g chorizo, skinned and thickly sliced
A coarsely textured spiced pork sausage widely used in Spanish and Mexican cooking. It is made…
- 100g whole blanched almonds (use Marcona if it's a special occasion)
- 2 tbsp membrillo (quince paste)
- 4 tbsp Sherry vinegar
- 1 tbsp lemon juice, plus an extra squeeze
- 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 large pear or 2 small firm pears (I used Red Williams)
Like apples, to which they are related, pears come in thousands of varieties, of which only a…
- small pack parsley, leaves picked and roughly torn
One of the most ubiquitous herbs in British cookery, parsley is also popular in European and…
- 50g Manchego, shaved
Manchego is a popular, rich, creamy sheep's milk cheese that comes from the La Mancha region…
Put the beets in a large pan of water (if you have a mix of colours, cook in separate pans as the colours will bleed). Bring the water to a boil, cover and leave to simmer – about 20-40 mins, depending on the size of the beets. Use a skewer or small sharp knife to check that they’re tender in the centre (try not to poke too often or they’ll bleed all their juices into the water).
Drain the beets and leave to cool in a colander. When cool enough to handle, peel away the skins, root and stalks, then roughly chop or slice the beets.
Put the chorizo in a cold frying pan and fry over a medium heat until crisp – you should collect lots of oil in the pan. Lift out the chorizo with a slotted spoon and keep warm. Tip in the almonds and fry quickly until just turning brown on the edges. Scoop out with a slotted spoon and place on kitchen paper to dry.
Make the dressing by melting the membrillo in the pan with the chorizo oil, Sherry vinegar and 1 tbsp lemon juice. Mix in the olive oil and season.
Core and thinly slice the pear, toss with a little lemon juice to stop it browning, then arrange on a platter with the beets, chorizo and almonds. Toss together with the dressing, if you like, or serve the dressing on the side. Sprinkle over the parsley and Manchego and serve immediately.
The beetroot in this dish works really well with the salty, smoky chorizo and smooth Spanish cheese.This salad is wonderful to eat just as it is – serve with some crusty bread. It also makes a great side dish for a paprika- rubbed roast chicken or hake fillets. You could also serve this for a starter, topped with some fried quail’s eggs.