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Danielle Alvarez's Beetroot and Persimmon Salad

Makes 4 servings

The trickiest part of this salad is cooking the beetroot. I recommend this method as it intensifies their flavor in the best way, but the trick is in maintaining the texture. Almost all beetroot will cook at different times depending on type and size, so it’s important to know what you’re looking for. You want the beetroot skin to slip off quite easily, but when you stick a knife in there should be a slight resistance, as if you are piercing into wet sand—otherwise it’s overcooked and mushy. It’s not the end of the world, and you almost have to overcook some before you can understand the difference, but in my opinion a beetroot with some texture is far superior.

This is such a pretty salad. I would never sacrifice substance for looks but in this case, you get both. Aleppo is a perfect sprinkle chili. Originally from Aleppo in Syria, but now most likely coming from Turkey, it has a good amount of heat but is not powdery when ground, so you can use less and still see the pretty red flecks. And use sweet fuyu persimmons: the variety you slice thinly and eat before they have fully ripened; the hachiya variety, which have to completely soften before you can eat (due to tannins), are beautiful scooped on a cheese plate or for baking.