The name beets always made me wince as a kid. I never tried them until I was twenty-one and at a dinner party where I couldn’t refuse them. The beets were simple slices of roasted beets dressed with sour cream and beet juice over a bed of crisp greens. Much to my surprise, I liked how sweet they were. So I learned to eat beets and add them to my short “vegetables that I eat” list. When you’re twenty-one, you have a short list.
Beets are delicious, sweet and so good for you. I wish they had a more appealing name. This salad has a perfect balance of flavors – the sweetness of the beets, the tang of the goat cheese and a light vinaigrette that doesn’t overpower either flavor. And just look at those colors! Both delicious and visually pretty.
This is a salad you can prep the night before and arrange the next day before serving. I sorted by color, wrapped in foil and roast six medium sized beets (cleaned and trimmed) in a 425° pre-heated oven for about 1 1/2 hours the day before. While the beets were roasting, I made the vinaigrette by adding all the ingredients (shallots, lemon juice, red wine vinegar, sugar, salt, pepper and olive oil) in a mason jar and shaking it vigorously to blend.
Once the beets are roasted, remove them from the oven and allowed them to cool before handling. I don’t mix the colors since I don’t want the red beets staining the golden beets. I sorted them by color and work each group in two batches. Remove the skins and slice the beets 1/4 inch thick. Place in a small glass bowl, coat with 1/3 of the vinaigrette and cover. Repeat with the other batch and store both containers in the refrigerator.
Note: Wear gloves and an apron to avoid staining your hands and clothing.
Assembling the salad: Place the slices in alternating colors, add crumbled goat cheese pieces, drizzle with the reserved 1/3 vinaigrette, microgreens and salt and pepper. Note: I made this a heartier salad by placing a bed of mixed greens under the beets. The reserve vinaigrette is sufficient to dress the greens.
Roasted Heirloom Beet & Goat Cheese Salad
The sweetness of these roasted beets contrasted by the tangy goat cheese makes this the perfect Spring salad.
- 6 medium beets (golden and red), cleaned and trimmed
- 4 Tablespoons olive oil
- 2 Tablespoons shallots, minced
- 2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 2 Tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 1/4 teaspoon sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
- 4 ounces goat cheese
- Garnish: microgreens
Preheat oven to 425°. Sort beets by color and wrap in foil. Place the two packets of beets in the center rack and roast until tender – about 1 1/2 -2 hours. Remove from oven and allow to cool before handling.
Note: Beets can stain your hands and clothing. I like to use gloves and an apron when handling beets.
Making the Vinaigrette: Combine the olive oil, shallots, lemon juice, red wine vinegar, sugar, salt and pepper in a mason jar and shake vigorously to blend. Set aside.
Once cooled, remove the skins from the beets and cut into 1/4 inch thick slices. Place in two separate bowls by color. Add 1/3 of the vinaigrette to each bowl and toss to coat the beets.
Note: If you are not serving the salad immediately, cover and refrigerate overnight. Assemble the next day.
Arrange the beets on a serving platter, drizzle with extra vinaigrette, crumble the goat cheese in pieces and scatter on top of the beets. Garnish with microgreens and a little finishing salt and pepper, if desired.