One thing I love about the whole foods plant-based lifestyle is continually being challenged to eat a variety of foods prepared in a variety of ways. Sometimes, they are foods I love, for example, eggplant. Other times, they are foods that I eat once or twice a year out of a sense of obligation. Beets are one of those foods. It’s not that I dislike them, and it fact, I have had some extraordinary beet-based recipes like borscht and beet and blood-orange salad. However, usually, when faced with preparing one, it ends up either boiled or pickled, and is not very inspiring. I decided to try air frying one, just to see what I would end up with. Let me tell you, the results were amazing. The sugar in the beet caramelized it’s edges, and it was tender and sweet inside, kind of like sweet potato fries– only better. After making the beet, I just had to try it in a summer roll. Here, it is surrounded by sliced apple, fresh basil, red peppers, and pea greens. The dipping sauce that accompanies these rolls is a bit sweet, and has a nice kick to it.
1 package rice paper wrappers
1 golden beet, peeled and quartered
two cups pea greens
1 red pepper, cut into rings
10-12 fresh basil leaves
2 apples, cleaned, cored, and cut into slices
2 tablespoons tahini (made from sesame seeds only)
1 inch piece peeled ginger
4 1/2 cups water, divided
1 tablespoon white balsamic vinegar, or another sweet vinegar
- Make the dressing: Using a high speed blender, puree one apple, the vinegar, the tahini, and the ginger.
- Line the bottom of the air fryer with a piece of parchment paper. Place the quartered beet on the parchment paper. Set the air fryer to 360 degrees, and cook the beet for 15 minutes. Flip and rotate it, and cook for another 12 minutes. Allow the beet to cool. Cut it into slices.
- While the beet cooks, boil four cups of water. Turn off the water, and dip a sheet of rice paper in the water. Using a slotted spoon, make sure it is fully submerged for 5 seconds. Remove the rice paper from the water and lay it flat on a cutting board.
- Fill the rice paper with a slice of apple, a slice of beet, about 10 pea greens, a basil leaf, and a pepper ring. Roll the rice paper so the apple and vegetables are encased. Repeat, making 8-10 rolls.