Salad Ingredients:

• 1 head of Romaine, coarsely chopped

• 1 large Beet-scrubbed and peeled and cut in half

• ½ cup Carrot Matchsticks

• 1 Green Apple, peeled, cored and thinly sliced

• 2 stalks of celery-chopped (optional)

• 1 (15-ounce) can hearts of palm, drained and sliced on an angle in 1-inch pieces

• 1 can (15-ounces)quartered artichoke hearts in water, drained well

• ½ Red Onion, thinly sliced into rings

• ½ cup chopped walnuts

• 2 ounces goat or feta cheese

Basic Balsamic Vinaigrette:

• 1/3 cup balsamic vinegar

• 2/3 cup extra virgin olive oil

• 4+ garlic cloves, chopped finely or minced

• 2 packets of Equal (or may use 2 Tbs agave nectar)

• a pinch of salt

• a pinch of ground pepper

• dried Italian seasonings, optional

Add all ingredients in a bowl and whisk til well blended. Taste, adjust the seasoning if desired. Add beets and carrots and toss. Put in fridge and marinate for 30 minutes before serving.

Directions:

1. Place whole, peeled beets on parchment paper, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Seal in foil and bake at 450 degrees for about 40 minutes or until the beets feel tender while stuck with a fork. Cool, then slice. Use a heart shaped cookie cutter to cut the sliced beets into heart shapes.

2. In a bowl combine all dressing ingredients and whisk until well blended. Taste, adjust the seasoning if desired. Place beets in dressing and toss. Store in fridge for 30 minutes prior to serving. The beets will render juices that will make the salad more moist.

3. When ready to serve, combine all salad ingredients in a big bowl, divide and plate salad equally.

4. Top the salad mixture with beets, dabs of goat cheese and walnuts. Drizzle remaining dressing to taste.