While dicing the ingredients, I was reminded of the many times I used to make this salad for my father. It was his favorite and every year on New Year's eve, he requested for this. It has been a part of our celebration for as long as I could remember. My mother had a list of traditional foods that she cooked for our family on New Year's eve which included this salad, chicken asparagus soup, ube (purple yam) cooked in coconut milk, fruit cocktail salad, embutido (steamed meatloaf) and morcon (meat roll). To this day, we still try our best to continue this tradition.
There are many versions but in the Philippines, we like to use a combination of diced beets, carrots and potatoes. We like also add diced or shredded cooked chicken to our version. The beets are important as they give the distinctive pink highlights to this salad. The combination of flavors is what sets it apart with the beets and the carrots adding natural sweetness and texture along with the potatoes.
Getting these organic beets (shown above) recently instantly made me think of this salad. I've always loved the flavor of beets and I'm sure my fellow beet lovers will agree.