Recent Reads – January

You know that feeling when you’re so bundled up that you feel like you’re wearing one of those big sumo wrestling body suits and you can hardly move so you walk like the tin man? And because you’re so bundled you think that there is no possible way that you will ever be cold again? And then you actually walk outside and the brutal -35◦F wind chill slaps you in the face and your noise hairs freeze? Do you know what we’re talking about?

 Lake Superior sunset

This is Minnesota in January, friends. Which means all we really want to do right now is drink ho-cho (hot chocolate) and curl up on the couch and read some good books.

We started a book club a few months ago with friends and besides eating cheese, drinking vino and chatting about non-book-club-related topics, we have actually read some good books! Here are the recent reads:

 

  • The Husband’s Secret by Liane Moriarty: Told from the perspective of three different women, this book was so good that we stayed up way too late each night for a week because we needed to know how each woman’s story was going to end. Love, loss, betrayal, and forgiveness. This is a page turner.

 

  • Where’d you Go, Bernadette by Mari Semple: We were laughing so hard while reading the story of 15-year-old Bee and her mom, Bernadette that we had to set the book down and wait for our eyes to stop tearing. The writing is clever and the characters are extremely entertaining.

Winter is hibernation season, so go read some good books! And make sure to double dip in some warm eats while curled up on the couch by the fire.

Citrus Beet Salad

 

Beet salad 2

Happy New Year! We can hardly believe it’s 2015! Weren’t we just talking about the Y2K bug yesterday?!

We welcomed the New Year with tacos, sangria and friends, and spent New Year’s day eating beef brisket sandwiches and sipping bloody marys while cheering on the Minnesota Gophers in the Citrus Bowl with family and friends.

The Citrus Bowl didn’t end in our favor. Missouri was just too tough! But this citrus beet salad was a winner! (oh yes, that transition just happened). We made it for a holiday dinner party last Saturday and people were saying, “I’m all about this beet salad!” Winner.

 Beet salad 1

Tangerine slices are mixed with red and golden beets, creating a burst of citrus among earthy flavors. The radicchio and endive provide a crunch and slightly bitter taste that pairs well with the smooth and sweet ricotta salata. Parsley and roasted Marcona almonds top it all off.

Serve this colorful citrus beet salad at your next dinner party or make it for yourself and eat it straight out of the bowl.

Happy double dipping!

Beet salad 3

Citrus Beet Salad – from Coastal Living December 2014

Makes 8 servings

Ingredients:

  • 2 large red beets, peeled and halved
  • 2 large golden beets, peeled and halved
  • 3 tangerines
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cracked black pepper
  • 4 cups chopped radicchio
  • 2 cups diagonally sliced golden endive (about 2 heads)
  • 1/2 crumbled feta or ricotta salata cheese
  • 1/2 cup Marcona almonds, toasted and chopped
  • 1/4 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves

Instructions:

1. wrap red and golden beets in parchment paper or aluminum foil and roast in oven for 1 hour at 425 degrees F. For a quicker cooking time, wrap in parchment paper and microwave on high for 5 to 7 minutes. When beets are tender, cut into wedges.

2. Peel and section tangerines over a bowl; squeeze membranes to extract juice. Whisk in oil, mustard, salt, and pepper.

3. Arrange radicchio and endive on a platter; drizzle with half of dressing. Top with beets, tangerine sections, and cheese. Sprinkle with almonds and parsley; drizzle with remaining dressing.