Homegrown and Wholesome

Well, not quite homegrown, because that would indicate ‘grown by me’. Which would be inaccurate. A few weekends ago, all the new residents of 711 descended on Neon’s parents house in Santa Barbara. It is a little piece of heaven atop the mountains overlooking the whole of SB, the Pacific Ocean and Channel Islands. It is officially one of the most spectacular places I have ever stayed. The pool, hot tub, mimosas and homemade pizza didn’t do any harm either.

At the end of our stay, Neon’s Mum asked if we would like to take some treasures from her vegetable garden back with us to SF. Uh, yes please! One of the homegrown delicacies we took were some plump, firm beets. I decided to showcase these in a salad with goat cheese as the first course of a ‘romantic’ Friday night roomie dinner for Neon and I. I know, such party animals. We even had candles. Don’t panic Mum, San Francisco hasn’t rubbed off on me quite that much!

Beet & Goat Cheese Salad

Serves: 2 as an appetizer


  • 2 medium beets, roasted, peeled and chopped
  • a small log of goat cheese, sliced
  • a handful of arugula
  • a handful of spinach
  • juice of 1/2 a lemon
  • 1 tsp mustard powder
  • 1 tsp sherry vinegar
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • a splash of balsamic vinengar
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • salt & pepper


  • Prepare the beets however you like. I used this method.
  • Combine all the ingredients from lemon down in a dish, or shake together in a small jar with a lid.
  • Place spinach and arugula on a plate, top with beets and goat cheese and drizzle dressing over the top. Alternatively you can toss the leaves in the dressing and then combine goat cheese and beets.
  • I would also be tempted to add some walnuts to this, but I didn’t have any on hand.

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