The Problem With Beets

Roasted Beet, Goat Cheese, and Pecan Salad

I don’t know what to do with beets. It’s not that I don’t know how to cook them – they’re easy enough to roast – but rather that I don’t know what to do with them after that.

After making roasted beet, goat cheese, and pecan salad on two very recent occasions, I tried to come up with ideas for something new.

“Really, what do people make with beets?” my husband asked.

To which I responded, “Borscht?”

Failed brainstorming attempts aside, this salad is really a no brainer, and it’s easy and delicious. Even if you think you’re not a fan of beets, give it a try. The sweet-tangy balsamic vinegar and creamy goat cheese tone down the beets’ earthiness and bring out their sweetness. And with all the other goodies in the salad, even beet haters may only notice the beets for the flavor they bring to the plate.

And seriously, if you have suggestions for other uses for beets (other than borscht!), let me know in the comments. We get a lot of them in our market basket. I’m a little desperate.

Roasted Beet, Goat Cheese, and Pecan Salad

4 medium beets, scrubbed well, tops trimmed to ¼”
¼ cup balsamic vinegar
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
Salad greens (arugula is traditional, but – shhhh – I don’t love bitter salad greens, so I usually use red leaf lettuce)
Pecan halves, toasted
Plain chevre (goat cheese), a 4 oz. package is plenty

Heat oven to 375 degrees. Wrap beets in foil and roast about 45 minutes or until they are tender when pierced with the tip of a knife. Allow to cool, then use a paring knife to slip skins off. Dice beets into ½ inch chunks.

Meanwhile, make dressing: Whisk together vinegar and olive oil; season to taste with salt and pepper. Toss diced beets with a third of the dressing and set aside to marinate for at least an hour.

When ready to serve salad, toss greens with the remainder of the dressing; arrange beets, pecan halves, and goat cheese on top.

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9 responses to “The Problem With Beets

  1. Have you tried Giada’s beet, walnut, cherry, avocado and goat cheese salad? She adds some honey to the balsamic and you pour it over the beets before you roast them. It’s basically almost exactly like your salad, but with a few variations. The dried cherries are awesome!

    And I’m loling at Ben’s comment about beets — that’s so him! 🙂

    • You know what, that might solve two of my problems! I haven’t actually tried dried cherries, but I wonder if I could eat them despite my OAS. Giada’s recipe sounds great; I’m going to have to try it!

  2. Here is a great Beet recipe from a friend of mine! Enjoy!
    Roasted Beet Potato Salad

    Ingredients:
    Balsamic Vinegar, 1/3 c
    Beets, 1 1/2 lb
    Brown Sugar, 2 tsp
    Chicken Broth, 2/3 c
    Olive Oil, 2 tbsp
    Pepper, Dash
    Potatoes, 1 1/2 lb
    Red Onions, 2
    Salt, 1/2 tsp

    Preparation:
    Cut potatoes and onions. Place in two 15 x 10 baking pans coated with cooking spray. Sprinkle with 1/4 tsp salt and drizzle with oil; toss to coat.Peel and wedge beets. Place in pan and do not stir. Roast, uncovered, at 425 for 35-40 min.For dressing, combine remaining ingredients in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, until reduced to 1/3 c. Transfer vegetables to a large bowl. Drizzle with dressing and toss to coat.

  3. Ozarkhomesteader

    Given your background, at least what I picked up from your “about” page, you might like this pasta and sausage recipe with roasted beets and butternut squash: http://ozarkhomesteader.wordpress.com/2010/05/19/roasted-vegetables-fusilli-with-italian-sausage-and-goat-cheese/

    My first little blog post ever was on beets too:
    http://ozarkhomesteader.wordpress.com/2009/05/27/hello-world/

  4. Eliza,

    There is a fairly well-known and often replicated, really dense, rich chocolate cake recipe that uses beets. You can’t taste them or feel them on your tongue. Google it!

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