Roasted Beet, Blue Cheese and Arugula Salad

Beet Salad VIIThis recipe was inspired by one that came with a bunch of supermarket golden beets and a recipe devised by author Dorie Greenspan and shared on her blog, In the Kitchen and On the Road with Dorie.  If you are in a hurry, use pre-cooked beets now available in supermarket produce departments. Warming them in the microwave helps the beets to absorb the dressing. Serves 6-8.

1 lb beets, weighed without greens (red or golden, or a mix)
2 TBSP balsamic vinegar
¼ tsp kosher salt or to taste
Fresh-ground pepper
2 TBSP extra virgin olive oil
2 TBSP walnut oil
3 oz blue cheese or goat cheese, shaved into shards
½ C toasted walnut halves*
1 ½ TBSP honey, for drizzling
5 oz bag arugula (or use mesclun salad greens)

Scrub the beets and trim stems to about 1inch. Place them in an ovenproof casserole, add ¼”of water and cover tightly. Roast at 375° until the sharp point of a paring knife penetrates each beet easily. (Time will depend on the size of the beets, probably 35-50 minutes.) Allow beets to cool, then slip off the skins and trim the tops and bottoms to remove the roots and remaining stems. Chill in refrigerator or place in heavy zip-lock bag and store in freezer for later use. (Thaw at room temperature before using; this will take several hours.)

While beets roast, make the dressing. Place vinegar and salt in a small bowl or jar and whisk to dissolve the salt. Slowly beat in the oil. Season with fresh-ground pepper to taste. Set dressing aside. This can be made a day ahead; whisk to re-combine as needed.

In a medium-size bowl, toss the greens with just enough dressing to coat them lightly and transfer to a serving platter. Cut the beets into cubes and toss with more of the dressing, coating them well. Arrange beets on top of the greens; sprinkle with walnuts and chards of cheese. Drizzle with a little more vinaigrette if you think it is needed, then drizzle lightly with honey. Toss at the table, or if serving as part of a buffet, leave as is and provide utensils that will make it easy for guests to help themselves to the layers of salad.

*Toast walnuts on a baking sheet in a 350° oven for about 10 minutes or until fragrant. Watch carefully to avoid burning them.

Beet Salad II

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2 thoughts on “Roasted Beet, Blue Cheese and Arugula Salad

  1. Pre-cooked beets?! I haven’t heard of those- that would make using beets SO much easier, but then again you’d miss out on some of the more fun varieties like the candy stripe and golden beets.

    Definitely going to try this!

    • Pre-cooked beets can sometimes be found in produce sections of markets. Trader Joe’s has small red ones in boxes in the fresh produce case. You’re right on both counts–much easier, but not a variety of color choices!

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