I’ve always been a big fan of roasted beets but have never liked the notoriously wan store-bought variety. It turns out it’s incredibly easy to roast beets yourself with minimal active cooking time, and the result is excellent even with simple grocery-store bought beets.
The trick, which I learned from Mark Bittman who in turned apparently learned from Jean-George is to trim and wash the beets thoroughly and then individually wrap them in tin foil while still damp. Then place them in a 400° oven for 45 minutes to an hour. You know they’re done when a sharp knife easily pierces them without much resistance.
Peel the beets after they cool slightly — the skin comes right off. Or stick them in the fridge with the foil still on for about a week. In this case I combined them with toasted walnuts, goat cheese, and lots of parsley, and topped with a simple dijon vinaigrette. Who says you can’t have a great salad in the winter?
Beet Salad with Goat Cheese, Toasted Walnuts, and Parsley
- 2 pounds beets about 3-4 large beets
- 1/2 cup walnuts or less if you don't like walnuts as much as I do
- 1/4 cup or more chopped parsley
- 1/2 cup goat cheese say, 2-3 ounces
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Trim beets and wash them thoroughly. Then dry slightly but while still wet wrap individually in tin foil. Put in oven for around 45 minutes.
Meanwhile toast walnuts by putting them in a frying pan (dry) on medium heat for about 5 minutes until they brown slightly and smell. Stir occasionally to make sure they don't burn.
When beets are done, let cool slightly and then peel and chop. You can let them return to room temperature or put them in the fridge to speed things up. Mix with toasted walnuts, crumbled goat cheese, and chopped parsley. Any dressing will do, but a simple dijon vinaigrette is a good choice.