Beet French Dip
Winter is officially here in Phoenix which means it’s 60 degrees. I’ve broken out my little winter gloves and turned on the heater to prepare. I’m definitely a wimp when it comes to being cold! Even after I prep a salad or drink a seltzer, I have to breathe into my hands a little bit to warm them up.
Winter means so many things to me for food! Deep savory root vegetables, chunky stews, and bright crisp festive salads – the list goes on. Last year around this time, I visited Chicago to see my sister Susan. She took me to a place to eat in West Loop called Bad Hunter and that’s where I got the inspiration for this recipe.
My parents never made French dip growing up, so the first time I had it was at my high school – and let me tell you… It was gross. Because of this, I had completely written off the sandwich, even vegan versions, until I stumbled across one made out of beets. Such a smart idea!
My Beet French Dip sandwich is super easy to make. I’d actually say the hardest part is patiently waiting for the beets to cook and for the onions to caramelize. Or maybe it’s locating fresh horseradish at the grocery store – I found it next to the refrigerated pickles at Sprouts!
The components are simple - crusty bread, beets cooked in vegetable broth & thyme, caramelized onion, blanched spinach, horseradish dijonnaise, and beet au jus! These could be served with some of my sides. Perhaps my sour cream mashed potatoes? Maybe festive broccolini? You’ll have to let me know what you pair these with.
A lot of vegan recipes struggle to create a true savory base. I have a few ingredients I always keep on-hand to help veggies reach optimum savory-ness: marmite, dark chocolate, stout beer, and Better Than Bouillon No-Beef Base.
This specific recipe uses marmite in the au jus. If you’re not familiar with it, it’s a yeast product that has a salty, earthy flavor. It’s very similar to vegemite. I’ve seen it a few times at Whole Foods, and I’m almost positive I’ve seen it at World Market, but I usually buy it on Amazon for convenience since I don’t make it to either of those stores very often.
You of course can make the au jus without the marmite, but I recommend subbing one of the other ingredients (maybe not stout beer for this one) listed above to help achieve that deep earthy flavor.
If you try this recipe, let me know! Leave a comment or tag me at #hellyesitsvegan on Instagram. Cheers!