In Puglia, restaurant meals always begin with more than a dozen vegetable dishes. Now, we're seeing salads like it at lots of new Italian restaurants in America. The flavor of beets and fresh mint together is simply sensational.  


  • 2 pounds beets (weigh after removing roots and greens), unpeeled
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon red-wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons coarse salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup shredded fresh mint


Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil, and cook beets until fork tender, about 30 minutes for small beets. Remove from water and set aside until cool enough to handle. Slip off skins and cut beets into 1/4-inch slices. Whisk vinegar, lemon juice, olive oil, coarse salt, and pepper together in a large bowl. Add beets and toss thoroughly. Gently fold mint into beets. Adjust seasoning and serve at room temperature.