I've always been enamoured by the idea of a CSA type veggie box. Enamoured because of the whole feel-good green vibe (I'm a closet greenie, okay) and also a little petrified, because, when it comes to food, I'm a bit of a control freak. In most other parts of my life I'm so laidback that I'm pretty much horizontal, but when it comes to what we're eating and specifically what I'm making, I like to plan out my meals and this of course requires full control of the grocery buying (and choosing) process.
Enter Nicola and her tweet regarding local veggieboxes earlier this month. Well, curiosity killed the cat (so to speak) and I immediately signed up. I paid no heed to the voices in my head screaming: "But what if you don't like the contents?", "How are you going to fit all the veggies into proper meals before they go off?" and "Nooooooooooooooooooo, we demand control!"
Yeah, those voices can get pretty pesky at times. Imagine my delight when I received my first veggiebox, brimming with freshly picked goodness - rainbow(!) swiss chard, orange-fleshed(!) sweet potatoes and a bunch of beetroots, leaves attached(!), amongst other things. Not to mention the slender, crisp first asparagus of the season.
Beetroot is one of those underrated vegetables - just because they take long to cook and stain everything in sight, people seem reluctant to want to cook them. Which is a shame really as their brilliant ruby colouring brightens up any dish and their earthy sweetness will please even the most picky palates. I decided to forego the usual slow roasting this time. Make no mistake, the beetroot bulbs shine when given this treatment, but it's a bit 'been there, done that', isn't it? Instead, I sliced them up thinly, gave them a quick turn on the stove, then layered them with slivers of leek and chunks of blue cheese atop a homemade pizza base.
And let me tell you, it was goooooooooooood. The bite of the blue cheese perfectly complements the subtle sweetness of the beetroot making this unexpected combo a surefire winner. Bonus? The pretty pink beetroot slices makes for a very handsome pizza indeed. Go on, try this one for yourself, you won't be sorry.
I'm submitting this to Simona from Briciole who will be hosting WHB #253. Weekend Herb Blogging is a weekly blog event spotlighting fruit, vegetables and herbs organised by Haalo from Cook Almost Anything.
Beetroot & Blue Cheese Pizza
Makes 1 medium pizza
1/2 batch of pizza dough2 smallish raw beetrootstomato paste/tomato sauce1 baby leek, sliced into thin rounds60g creamy blue cheese*
1. Preheat oven to 180C (350F). Scrub beets thoroughly, peel and slice thinly into rounds. Place in a small saucepan with a little bit of water and cook for about 5 minutes. Remove from heat.2. Roll pizza dough out onto a floured surface to form your pizza base. Transfer to a pizza stone or a piece of heavy duty foil, then spread with tomato paste or tomato sauce (not ketchup).3. Layer beet slices on top of the pizza base, followed by leeks and finish off by crumbling blue cheese over. Season with salt and pepper and place in the oven for 12 - 15 minutes.
*I used Fairview's Blue Tower, but any creamy blue will do nicely.
Make this pizza your own, by swapping the blue cheese with your favourite cheese - camembert, brie or goats cheese would all work splendidly. Heck, even feta would go down a treat.