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Friday, July 26, 2013

Balsamic Roasted Beet Salad

 I love roasted beets a whole lot, but until recently I left that to the restaurants. I know it wasn’t necessarily hard, but for whatever reason I was too intimidated (or lazy) to roast them at home. As it turns out, I had no reason to be intimidated or lazy, because it really is simple!
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My first foray into roasted beets resulted in a salad combined with greens, asparagus (cooked), feta, and balsamic vinaigrette. This beet salad was actually a creation of my friend Maggie, but when she brought it to serve with dinner at our house, I decided it was too gorgeous to go unphotographed and unblogged!

How do you make roasted beets even better? You soak them in balsamic after roasting! The beets made this salad, although the other additions (goat cheese and pecans) taste as pretty as they look! Overcome those beet-roasting aversions, starting with this salad!

One Year Ago: White Gazpacho
Two Years Ago: Sesame Soy Green Beans
Three Years Ago: Peanut Butterscotch Bars

Balsamic Roasted Beet Salad
from Barefoot Contessa (as seen on Food Network)

-8 medium-sized beets, tops removed and scrubbed
-1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
-1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
-2 tsp Dijon mustard
-kosher salt & freshly ground pepper
-8 cups mixed greens
-1/3 cup walnuts, toasted
-4 oz crumbled goat cheese

1. Preheat oven to 400F. Wrap the beets individually in aluminum foil and place them on a sheet pan. Roast for 50 minutes to 1 hour, until a sharp knife inserted into the middle indicates that they are tender. Unwrap each and set aside for 10 minutes, until cool enough to handle. Peel the beets with a small, sharp knife (they may peel off without a knife).
2. Meanwhile, whisk together the vinegar, olive oil, mustard, 2 tsp salt, and 1 tsp pepper. While the beets are still warm, cut each one in half and then each half into 4-6 wedges. Places them in a large bowl and toss them (while still warm) with half of the vinaigrette, 1 tsp salt, and 1/4 tsp pepper.
3. Arrange the mixed greens on a platter. Top with beets, walnuts, and goat cheese. Drizzle with additional vinaigrette and serve warm or at room temperature. (Beets can also be made ahead and served cold atop the salad)