Ruby Salad with Crumbled Feta & Spicy Pepitas



For the Pepitas:
Toss 6 oz. pepitas with 1 tsp. corn or peanut oil, 1 tsp. pure chile powder (such as New Mexico or ancho), and 3/4 tsp. kosher salt. Spread evenly on a rimmed baking sheet and roast at 375F until golden and fragrant, 6 to 8 minutes (you'll hear them popping). Let cool completely on the baking sheet. If making ahead, store in an airtight container.

For the Beets:
1 bunch small beets (4 or 5), trimmed and scrubbed
2-3 sprigs fresh thyme or rosemary or 3 fresh bay leaves 1/2 tsp. kosher or sea salt
1 Tbsp. olive oil

For the Vinaigrette:
1 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
2 Tbsp. sherry vinegar
2 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

For the Salad:
4 cups very thinly sliced red cabbage (from 1 very small head)
1 medium red onion, very thinly sliced
4 oz. (4 c.) mixed baby greens
6 oz. feta cheese, crumbled (about 1/2 cup)
1 recipe of the spicy pepitas

Roast the beets: Heat the oven to 400F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil. Put the beets, herbs, salt and olive oil in the center; toss the beets to coat. Fold the foil into a loose-fitting but tightly sealed packet around the beets. Roast the packet on the baking sheet until the beets are tender, about 1 hour and 20 minutes. Let the beets cool completely in the foil. When cool, use a paring knife to peel and slice the beets into wedges (six to eight per beet). The beets can be roasted up to two days ahead and refrigerated.

Make the vinaigrette: In a small bowl, combine the mustard, vinegar, lemon juice, 1/4 tsp. salt, and a few grinds of pepper. Slowly whisk in the oil.

Make the Salad: Combine the cabbage and onion in a medium bowl and set aside. About an hour before serving, add the beet wedges to the cabbage and onions; toss gently with half of the vinaigrette.

Just before serving, add the baby greens, half the feta and half the pepitas; toss with the remaining vinaigrette. Arrange on a big serving platter and garnish with the remaining feta and pepitas.

Source of recipe: Fine Cooking #70

http://www.taunton.com/finecooking/recipes/ruby_salad_with_feta.aspx?ac=fp