Pantzaria Salata: Cold Beet and Garlic Salad

Beet salad
Gentl and Hyers / Getty Images
  • 60 mins
  • Prep: 10 mins,
  • Cook: 50 mins
  • Yield: 4 Servings
Ratings (8)

In Greek: παντζάρια σαλάτα, pronounced pahnd-ZAH-reeyah sah-LAH-tah

The combination of beets and garlic is a Greek favorite. This vibrant purple cold salad is easy to make and delicious. Although only a few ingredients, this salad has bold flavor--the earthiness of the beets marries nicely with the sharpness of the garlic and vinegar.

Although roasting beets imparts a rich taste, it is best that you boil the beets instead of roasting them. The boiled beets remain firm and don't break down in the marinade as a softer roasted beet would. If you have the time, leave the beets in their boiling water to cool before draining; the flavors and nutrients that may have escaped during cooking will have a chance to be absorbed by the beets. If you are cooking the beets ahead of time, leave them in their cooking water and place in the refrigerator (for up to 3 days) until ready to peel and slice. 

Try this salad with a dollop of thick yogurt on top or on the side. It's delicious!

What You'll Need

  • 2 pounds fresh red beets, or 2 cans of sliced beets (discard liquid)
  • 2  to 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • Sea salt, to taste
  • Freshly ground pepper, to taste

How to Make It

  1. If using fresh beets: Remove leaves, leaving about an inch of stem, and don't cut the taproot. Wash gently, being careful not to break the skin, and place in a pot of cold water to cover.
  2. Bring to a boil and cook until firm but cooked, about 40 to 50 minutes. Drain the beets, cool under running cold water, and remove skin with fingers. Slice.
  3. Combine beets, garlic, oil and vinegar in a bowl and toss. Add salt and pepper to taste, and refrigerate covered for several hours before serving.