This fall slaw plays on a series of contrasting elements. Flavors of sweet and tart, soft and crunchy, earthy and crisp are coated in a light, tangy lemon vinaigrette so that every ingredient works together for a perfect, happy mouthful of bright, sweet deliciousness.
By Mariela Alvarez Toro
I must have been with my good friend Nate when I discovered beets for the first time: real beets, out of the earth, not a can, roasted to perfection, alongside (you guessed it!) goat cheese and greens. I must have immediately lost my mind with that first taste, because there are few flavors as unique as the contrasting combination of sugar and dirt exemplified in this deeply hued root vegetable.
While roasting remains the best way to cook beets, I have thought a lot about what could go well with beets better than super creamy, super rich goat cheese. Carrots were delicious, chocolate was a good contender, but the hunt was not complete until this beautiful Fall slaw salad I have prepared for you today.
If beets are the sexiest of root vegetables, figs rein the fruit category. I mean, come on, figs are dark, mysterious, and hard to get. But once you get your hand on a basket full of fully ripe, beautiful figs, there is just nothing better.
This slaw, above any other I have made, banks on a series of contrasting elements: Sweet and tart, soft and crunchy, earthy and crisp. Coated in a light, tangy lemon vinaigrette, every ingredient works together for a perfect, happy mouthful of bright, sweet deliciousness.
Recently graduated with from Harvard University’s Graduate School of Design. She has recently completed "People in Food-Space", an ethnographic study on the cultural production of taste in space. She has also examined post-soviet food production systems and housing projects in Havana, Cuba. Originally from Puerto Rico, Mariela has been living in the United States for eight years. She has involved herself in both teaching and practice, while writing on food at tastyplan.com. Her goal as a food writer is to cook creatively, using the best ingredients to find new flavor combinations every day.