As the seasons change, we embrace the liminal moment and turn to dishes that anticipate fall but still harness the lingering flavors of summer. Daniel Benhaim, the farmer-meets-mad scientist chef behind one of our favorite culinary instagram accounts, @because_the_wind, concocted this stunning appetizer than does just that.
Using our handmade wooden Press—and our Mortar & Pestle—Daniel made this stunning stained glass-like vegetarian carpaccio, proving that this handy kitchen tool can do so much more than turn out perfect flatbreads and tortillas.
Beet Carpaccio with Garden Herbs and Pickles
Serves 1-4 people
For the beets
Using a 4 qt. saucepan, take 3 medium sized beets of different color varietals, cut off the stalks and simmer in heavily salted (approx. 3 tbsp. sea salt) water for about 15-20 minutes until tender. Once cool enough to handle, peel the skins by rubbing them off with your hands under running water. They should easily scrub right off.
Next, slice the peeled beets into 1/4 inch thick rounds and set aside.
Take the Permanent Collection Press and line with a cut sheet of parchment. Arrange the sliced beets in a mosaic of different colors. Top your beet assembly with another sheet of cut parchment and press. Lift the press and turn the beets in parchment 180 degrees and press again. Rotate once more, 90 degrees and press. Remove the now flattened beets from the press with parchment still attached and set aside.
1 egg yolk
1 clove garlic
1 tbsp dijon mustard
1/4 cup avocado oil
2 tbsp wine or fruit vinegar
1 tsp sea salt
1 tsp shichimi togarashi
Using the Mortar & Pestle, smash garlic until a translucent paste. Then, add mustard, sea salt, egg yolk and mix until a paste forms. Next, add avocado oil and keep mixing until homogenized, then thin it out with splashes of vinegar. Once emulsified mix in the togarashi, and set aside.
Pickles and Herbs
If you have the pleasure of having your own garden, pick a handful of herbs and any flowering buds of the season. We are now leaving Summer and entering Fall so I pickled basil, nasturtium, curry leaf, wild mustard and sansho.
I’m an avid pickler and pickle everything I can get my hands on. For this dish I chopped and sliced up a small mix of pickled young ginger, wild shallots and salt preserved cherry-plums. If you don’t have any homemade pickles at home you can use any store bought pickles that you enjoy.
On a large serving plate, about 10 inches, smear the Togarashi Aioli in a circular pattern in the center of the plate. Take the beets sandwiched in parchment, lift one side of parchment off and delicately but swiftly flip the beets over onto the aioli. Then lift up the remaining parchment. Adorn the beets with the herbs, pickles, a nice sprinkling of sea salt and shichimi togarashi. Drizzle with either olive oil or virgin sesame oil and vinegar, then finish with a light zesting of citrus.