When creating a savory menu for this summer's Forth salon, I reached for the fresh flavors that most often grace my Community Supported Agriculture farm share box. This time of year, there is seemingly no end to the supply of plump, red, delicious beets. And I'm of a mind that unnecessary waste is a shame, especially when each beetroot is lovingly tended, grown, and cared for by a team of talented farmers.
Since becoming an annual member of a local CSA, I've developed a myriad of recipes to avoid waste, and use every possible morsel that arrives each week. One of my favorites that gets loads of playing time in the summer is Beet Greens with Sage & Brown Butter. This recipe is extra fun because it is extremely flexible and can be served as a side with chicken and fish, or atop a variety of bases--from pasta & polenta to breakfast fritattas & toast points. For this season's salon, I decided to adapt the recipe to create a simple yet stunning flat bread.
PHYLLO FLAT BREAD TOPPED WITH BEET GREENS & SAGE BROWN BUTTER
- 1 package thick (country style) phyllo dough
- 1 bunch beet greens, washed & rough chopped
- 2 large scallions, chopped in 1/2" bias
- generous handful of sage leaves, washed & stems trimmed
- 1 medium red onion, sliced into thin strips
- 3 Tbs. high quality butter (Plugra or the like)
- 2 Tbs. olive oil
- salt & pepper to taste
- juice from one lemon
- 1 log of soft goat cheese
- 8 oz ricotta
- generous handful of parsley, chopped fine
Melt butter over medium heat in heavy skillet until fragrant & beginning to brown. Add sage leaves and cook until crispy, 2 - 3 minutes. remove sage leaves to a paper towel with slotted spoon retaining as much browned butter as possible. reduce heat to medium low, add olive oil, red onions & scallions. give a quick stir then add beet greens. cook until tender, 5 - 10 minutes. season with salt & pepper to taste.
Preheat oven to 350º. Line a large baking tray with parchment, and unroll the phyllo dough onto a flat surface. Carefully place one sheet of phyllo on the parchment and brush with olive oil, repeat with a second layer. Top phyllo with a sprinkling of ricotta & parsley. Repeat with 2 layers of phyllo & one layer of cheese until all phyllo is used. Keep a damp towel over the unused phyllo stack to prevent tearing.
Brush the top layer of phyllo with olive oil & top with the beet green mix. Crumble cooled sage leaves over the top of the beet greens. Bake in preheated oven for 20 minutes, or until phyllo is golden brown. Crumble goat cheese atop the flat bread & squeeze a bit of lemon juice over all. Season with salt & pepper to taste. Remove the parchment & flat bread to a cutting board & cut diagonally into diamond pieces. Can be served warm, or at room temperature.