This warm salad is the taste of autumn. The headiness of the white truffle vinaigrette and wild mushrooms will bring to mind the earthy aromas of a walk in the woods after the rain has stopped. The vibrant colour contrast of the beetroot against the watercress is redolent of dappled sunlight filtering through evergreens onto paths of rust-coloured leaves.
This salad makes a special starter, or try adding chunky garlic croutons to make a standalone and satisfying supper.
Serves 2 as a main, or 4 as a starter.
Ingredients for the vinaigrette Serves: 2
Ingredients for the salad
Method for the warm mushroom salad
- Put the shallot, garlic and vinegar in a small bowl and set aside at room temperature.
- Preheat the oven to 200°C (180°C fan).
- Tip the beetroot cubes into a roasting tray and drizzle over 1 tbsp of olive oil and toss to coat. Season with salt and pepper and roast for 20-25 minutes, or until golden, but still firm.
- In the meantime, toast the hazelnuts in a dry frying pan until golden. Tip the nuts out into a serving bowl and set aside.
- Return the pan to the heat and add the remaining 1 tbsp of olive oil. Tip in the mushrooms, season, and sauté until golden, then tip into the bowl with the nuts. Add the beetroot once cooked too.
- Finish the vinaigrette by whisking in the remaining ingredients. Taste for seasoning and acidity, adjusting if necessary.
- Add the watercress to the serving dish and pour over the vinaigrette. Toss everything to combine and serve immediately.