Beet Salad With Goat Cheese Toasts
A beet salad can be spectacular if you roast your own beets, specifically fresh ones, not vacuum-packed or canned. They take at least an hour to cook so it’s a good idea to make them early, even two days in advance. Then, this tasty salad can be assembled in a few minutes. Choose any color beet, but the golden ones make an impression.
- Serves: 4 persons
- 4medium golden beets (the size of a tennis ball), trimmed and scrubbed
- Salt and pepper
- 1small shallot, minced
- 1small garlic clove, grated
- 3tablespoons sherry vinegar, plus more as needed
- ½cup extra-virgin olive oil
- ½teaspoon chopped thyme
- ½teaspoon chopped rosemary
- ½teaspoon finely sliced chives
- ½teaspoon lemon zest
- 4ounces fresh goat cheese, at room temperature
- 8to 10 thin slices of baguette
- 1medium fennel bulb, trimmed
Step 1Cook beets: Place the beets in a small roasting dish, add water to a depth of about 1 inch and a generous pinch of salt. Cover tightly and bake at 375 degrees for about 1 hour, until beets can be pierced with a fork. (Alternatively, simmer beets on the stovetop for an hour in well-salted water.)
Step 2Let cool slightly, then slip off skins while the beets are still warm. Cut beets into wedges and place in a small bowl. Beets may be cooked up to 2 days in advance.
Step 3While the beets roast, make the vinaigrette: Place shallot and garlic in a small bowl or jar. Cover with vinegar and add a pinch of salt. Whisk in olive oil and add pepper.
Step 4Prepare goat cheese: With a fork, stir herbs and lemon zest into goat cheese. Spread goat cheese mixture on baguette slices and set on a baking sheet. When ready to serve, bake until crisp and slightly browned, 10 minutes in a 375-degree oven or toaster oven. Toasts do not have to be piping hot when served.
Step 5Whisk dressing and pour over beets, reserving 3 tablespoons. Add a pinch of salt and toss beets well. Leave to sit for a few minutes, then taste and adjust vinegar and salt — beets are notorious for needing more vinegar and salt.
Step 6Thinly slice the fennel crosswise. Toss with a little salt and the reserved dressing. Arrange fennel on individual plates or a serving dish. Place dressed beets on fennel, then fluff fennel a bit. Garnish with goat cheese toasts and serve.