Sometimes I start developing recipes with a certain taste blend in mind, but this time the start was purely visual. I wanted the pretty beetroot colour contrasted with something green. The rest came together quickly, and the result is a quick, complex and very impressive salad that can be ready in 15 minutes.
All of the major flavours are present: the sweetness of the beetroot, crisp sourness of lemon in the dressing, a bit of bitter spiciness from rocket and pepper, nuttiness from buckwheat and walnuts, and finally the smoky salty bits of smoked tofu. I don’t think it can be successfully substituted by regular tofu, but you can experiment with adding more soy sauce and smoked salt, if you have any. The rest of the ingredients are available in any supermarket.
Beetroot salad (4 portions)240g roasted buckwheat
200g smoked tofu
4 handfuls of rocket
2 tbsp soy sauce
500g cooked beetroots
40g neutral oil + more for frying
Juice from 1/2 lemon
Rinse the buckwheat and cook according to the instructions on the package (usually about 10 minutes). Drain and let cool.
In the meantime, cut tofu into small cubes and fry in oil on medium heat until crispy. Add soy sauce and fry on low, stirring continuously, until the tofu is covered in the sauce and there is no more liquid in the pan (be careful not to burn it).
Cut the beetroots into thin slices. Mix oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper (to taste) to create the sauce.
Assemble the salad: divide the ingredients in 4 parts and on each plate put the buckwheat, tofu, rocket, beetroots and top with walnuts. Pour the sauce over the salad right before serving. If you want to take it with you for lunch, keep the sauce in a separate container, shake and add just before consumption.