Inspired by… colours and happiness

There are so many beautiful things I come across everyday when I go for a run. And each time I click a pic or observe something, I realize how much nature really has to offer! The unimaginable number of permutations and combinations that can amount to so many, many beautiful things in the world/nature has to offer simply blows my mind away.

But here is what is unfortunate, the mind is so occupied we miss most of the things that are around. While passing a pansies patch during one of my runs, I actually stopped running, panted for a minute, took my phone out and clicked a picture because it really seemed like these pansies were so happy to see me stick to my workout goals. It was motivating to see them smile, in so many bright colours. I can’t believe I missed so many obvious ways to make me smile!

What I have here is a very, ok, weird salad! Its a roasted beet salad, that comes with cucumbers, roasted garlic, candied lemon peel, lightly pickled carrots, all dressed in a simple, light dressing and some (attempted) ginger-buttermilk foam.

To roast the beets, all i did was par-cooked them in some stock and fried/roasted them in some garlic butter. Delish! Made the candied lemon peel in only 5-6 tablespoons of thick sugar syrup, after boiling the lemon peel in water for at least 15 minutes to take out the bitterness. I let the thinly sliced carrots macerate in some lemon juice, salt and sugar to make it pliable and easy to work with. Same with cucumber. And finally roasted the garlic in the same butter that I worked the beets in. To make the dressing, I combined equal portions lemon juice and olive oil, some paprika and salt, a teensy weensy bit of oregano and garlic powder in a jar and shook vigorously to emulsify it.

So, the foam was a trial. It didnt work out very well but at least I tried. I dont have a siphon or any fancy equipment so all I did was prepared the ginger buttermilk in a wide-mouthed tea cup (just combine 1:3 curd to water and add a few drops of ginger juice of finely diced ginger) and used a frother to foam it. There were huge bubbles that collapsed immediately, perhaps a stabilizer of some sort would’ve helped. Does Soy Leitichin work?

In the end, I tried to build a dome with the beets and surround it with all the pretty colours with specks of white foam around and a trail of the runny dressing, to resemble the bright pansies. The idea was to basically make the diner smile looking at all the detail and the colours. I dont think I did a great job. However, the taste- ah! What a surprise that was. There was the rich beet, bitterness and sweetness from the lemon, the carrots were sweet and sour, the cucumber was refreshing and the crunch from the bitter and flavourful garlic came together so well. I devoured it. Those pansies managed to make me happy again after all!

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Yes yes, I will work on plating.

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