Beetroot Balsamic Bake with Sweet Potato Topping
This warming treat is the perfect comfort dish. Sweet potato and beetroot makes a perfect marriage, and the sharpness of the balsamic vinegar gives a wonderful balance. The ideal winter ingredient, beetroot is wonderful for heart health thanks to its nitrate content. This helps the body to produce nitric oxide, which widens blood vessels and lowers the pressure inside them.
8 large raw beetroot, scrubbed and cut into wedges
4 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
6 large sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into large dice
1½ tablespoons wholegrain mustard
½ teaspoon cornflour
sea salt and black pepper
baby salad leaves, to serve (optional)
Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F/Gas mark 6. Place the beetroot wedges on a baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil and 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar and roast for 20–30 minutes, until soft and beginning to caramelize around the edges.
Meanwhile, place the diced sweet potatoes in a pan, cover with boiling water and simmer for 10–15 minutes, or until soft. Drain and return them to the pan. Add the mustard, season with salt and pepper, and mash to the finest texture you can.
Place the roasted beetroot in a baking dish, then add 2–3 tablespoons water to the pan that the beetroot was roasted in, and stir well to dislodge flavours and any bits of caramelized beetroot left behind from the roasting. Add the cornflour and stir well until thickened. Pour the liquid over the beetroot in the baking dish.
Top the beetroot with the sweet potato mash and bake in the oven for 15 minutes, or until lightly golden and crunchy. Serve with a baby leaf salad on the side, if you like.
Recipe and image are extracted from The Medicinal Chef: Healthy Every Day by Dale Pinnock (Quadrille: £18.99) Photography: Martin Poole. Dale will also be appearing live BBC Good Food Show Summer in the City (20th-22nd May 2016).