Steven Satterfield has been referred to as the “Vegetable Shaman” for his produce-driven menus at Miller Union restaurant in Atlanta, Georgia. A James Beard semifinalist for Best Chef: Southeast, Steven champions a philosophy that he terms Root to Leaf, which is also the title of his new book. In it he offers seasonal recipes for the everyday cook, while also updating the most iconic dishes of the Southern region with some of his own pleasantly unexpected twists
By combining nutty-flavored bulgur wheat with beets that he prepares from Root to Leaf, Steven creates a meal that is both delicious and incredibly healthful.
Bulgur Wheat with Roasted Baby Beets and Their Tops
4 small beets with tops
1 cup bulgur wheat
2 cups vegetable broth or water, heated
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
2 teaspoons kosher salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1 shallot, diced
Freshly ground black pepper
Juice of ½ lemon
4 ounces fresh cheese, such as farmers’ cheese or chèvre, crumbled
Heat the oven to 350ºF. Trim the tops from the beets and reserve. Wash the beet roots and place in a shallow roasting pan wide enough to hold them snugly in a single layer. Pour ¼ inch of water into the pan. Drizzle the beets with 1 tablespoon of olive oil and 2 tablespoons of vinegar and then season with salt and pepper. Cover the pan with parchment and foil and wrap the foil tightly around the lip of the pan. Roast the beets until tender, 45 to 60 minutes. To test for doneness, insert the tip of a paring knife into the flesh of a few beets. If they piece easily, remove the beets from the oven. If not, cook a little longer. Let the beets cool slightly and peel them while they are still warm. Slice them into quarters and set aside.
Wash the beet tops well and separate the stems from the leaves. Reserve the leaves. Slice the stems crosswise to make small dice, and set aside.
Place the bulgur wheat in a medium bowl. Pour the hot broth over the bulgur and add a pinch of salt. Cover and let sit until the grains swell and become tender, 15 to 20 minutes. Taste for seasoning and set aside.
In a medium skillet over medium-high heat, warm 1 tablespoon olive oil. Add the shallot and beet stems and season with salt and pepper. Cook until the shallot and beet stems are tender, 2 to 3 minutes, then add the beet greens. Using tongs, turn the leaves several times until wilted. Remove from the heat and set aside.
In a large bowl, mix together the cooked bulgur and the sautéed beet greens and stems and stir until combined. Taste for seasoning. Divide the grain mixture among 4 serving bowls.
Toss the roasted beets with the lemon juice, salt, and the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil. Divide the dressed beets among the serving bowls. Divide the cheese among the bowls and serve.