Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Roasted Beet Salad with Goat Cheese and Walnuts

I've mentioned my myriad food fears on HDHH before: Anything that requires yeast, appetizers, pies... The list goes on and on. Roasting beets is just another item that's been languishing in my file of fears for years.

I love, absolutely love, any salad that includes roasted beets. After ordering them at restaurants any number of times, I decided it was time to give it a whirl. Following an exhaustive Google search on the topic, I whacked the stems off a couple beets, wrapped them in foil, and tossed them in a hot-hot-hot oven until they got tender. Did I say "tender"? I mean burnt, stinky, and weird. I'm pretty sure I messed up, and my fear of roasting beets was born.

When the trauma of the initial beet roasting fail had worn off, I decided it was time for another attempt. My pal, Jill, joined me in the kitchen for encouragement and moral support. We peeled those suckers, diced them into pieces, and roasted them until I could spear one with a knife for a taste test. Take two = SUCCESS!

Roasted Beet Salad with Goat Cheese and Walnuts
Adapted from Bon Appetit
Serves: 4

4 small beets, peeled and cut into 1/2" cubes
4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
Salt and pepper
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons orange juice
1.5 teaspoons grated orange zest
8 cups mixed greens
4 ounces goat cheese, crumbled
1/2 cup walnuts, toasted

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spread the beets in a single layer on a baking sheet. Drizzle with 1 tablespoon olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast for 30 minutes, stirring halfway through, until beets are tender.

Meanwhile, whisk together remaining 3 tablespoons olive oil, vinegar, orange juice, and orange zest. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Drizzle dressing over lettuce. Top with roasted beets, goat cheese, and walnuts.


  1. Mmm, I adore roast beets and goat cheese. Looks like a gorgeous salad! I only started cooking with roast beets last summer myself, and it took some experimentation :)

  2. Bravo to you for facing your fear and making an incredibly delicious salad to boot! I love beets, though I didn't as a child. It's hard to believe that something sitting in the ground can end up so gorgeous and delicious.

  3. Bravo on your success. I love beets and I do usually roast them whole. As you said, wrapped in aluminum foil and on a baking sheet to catch drips. I find that an hour in a 400 degree oven is usually right but I make sure I can pierce them with the tip of a knife before I take them out. If they're large, it sometimes takes 1 1/2 hours. Cool, peel, dice, eat...with goat cheese, of course :)

  4. Thanks for your encouragement, ladies! And, Anita, I love the tip about putting a baking sheet below your beets when you're roasting them whole. The stench of burnt beet juice contributed to my initial bad roasting experience. :-)

  5. Awesome! I still have a long long list of things I'm terrified to do and I can only hope mine come out as beautiful as this!

  6. Glad you conquered your fear of beets! I love beets and roasting them whole is how I always make them!

  7. Roasted beets are so delicious. My only fear with preparing beets is making a mess. They are so good but stain horribly.

  8. Not a fan of beets...maybe if I roasted them I would like them? Glad you beat the beets!