This side dish, salad or lunch of Roasted Vegetable Salad with Feta Cream offers warm flavors with a creamy tangy dip of a Feta-Mascarpone cream.
You can make this dish in various ways: keep all ingredients raw, or roast them, cook them or puree them. I’ve roasted them for the simple reason that the roasting adds the most flavor and also keeps the nice bright colors as compared to the other ways of preparation. The additional flavor during roasting comes from the caramelization of the sugars in the vegetables.
If you decide to eating these vegetables raw, think about the way you cut them, as thick slices or thick strips may not be the easiest way to enjoy a salad.
Key Ingredients of this Recipe
- Beets – A vegetable that I love, basically comes in 2 colors (red and golden) and then there are the beautiful Chioggia beets, red and white spirals (often called candy cane or candy stripe beets). I used the golden beets in order to keep the vegetables in the same color, but of course you can use the red beets as well. Just be aware that the red ones will color the rest of your vegetables.
- Carrots – The younger the carrot the nicer the flavor. When the carrots are tiny, leave them whole; when they are bigger, cut them in half.
- Bell pepper – I picked an orange bell pepper for color reasons, but it’s also a pepper is a little sweeter than a green one.
- Tomatoes – These vegetables or fruits are going in the salad without roasting, to preserve the juices.
How to make Roasted Vegetables with Feta Cream
Step 1 – Prepare the beets. There are a couple of ways to prepare beets, roast them whole, wrapped in aluminum foil, roast them cut directly on the baking sheet, boil them in water or steam them. I also read that you can prepare beets in the microwave, but I never tried that, so won’t speak to that. Roasting whole beets may take about 40 minutes. Once they are cool, you peel them and slice them.
Step 2 – Roast the carrots for about 20-30 minutes, drizzled with olive oil and salt. Cut them in sticks, slices or on the bias when cooled.
Step 3 – Roast the bell peppers and they become deliciously tender and sweet. Bell peppers roast easily, whole or cut in half. You can roast them in the oven like I did or under the broiler, on the stove (on a gas flame, or on a grill pan) or on a grill (similar effect as on the stove directly on the gas flame). Cool the pepper, discard the skin and cut in strips.
Step 4 – Make the Feta Cream, by mixing feta cheese with mascarpone cheese. Add milk or the brine from the feta cheese to make it thinner.
Step 5 – Mix all cut vegetables with the chopped parsley, add a drizzle of olive oil and salt and pepper. Smear the feta cream on a plate transfer the vegetable salad to that plate. The combination of the feta cream; a salty tangy flavor and a creamy sandy texture is divine with these sweet roasted vegetables.
Roasted Vegetable Salad with Feta Cream
- 3-4 golden beets
- 2 bundles carrots
- 12 ounces orange tomatoes small
- 1 bell pepper orange
- olive oil
- salt and pepper
- 10 sprigs parsley finely chopped
- 4 ounces Feta cheese
- 1.5 ounces Mascarpone cheese
- 2 tablespoons milk
- olive oil
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
- Wash and dry the beets, wrap them in aluminum foil and place them on a baking sheet.
- Cut or pull the greens off the carrots, wash them and cut them in half. Place them on the baking sheet as well and drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt.
- Wash the bell pepper and place it on the baking sheet.
- Place the baking sheet in the oven and bake for 40 minutes. The carrots and bell pepper will be done before the beets, so take them off the baking sheet after about 20 minutes. and continue baking the beets for another 20 minutes, or until you can insert a fork without much resistance.
- Allow carrots and bell peppers to cool. Remove the skin from the bell pepper.
- Wash the tomatoes, cut them in half and keep them aside.
- Cut the carrots on the bias, or in sticks if you prefer. Cut the bell pepper in strips.
- When the beets are done. Allow them to cool and cut them in thin slices.
- Mix all the vegetables. Add a drizzle of olive oil, and salt and pepper to taste. Add the chopped parsley and mix.
- Transfer the feta and the Mascarpone to a blender and pulse a few times until well blended. Add the milk to get the desired consistency.
- Serve vegetables on plate with a 'smear' of feta cream.
- Drizzle with olive oil and enjoy!