A Tale of Two Days of Beets, Two Ways

When winter arrives, certain foods inevitably join our nightly repertoire, as they have in years past. Beets, Brussels sprouts, winter squashes and myriad root vegetable are in season. Hearty winter vegetables are generally inexpensive, flavorful, nutritious- and easy to quickly roast in the oven with a bit of olive oil, salt and pepper.

I am a huge proponent of roasting. As a busy mom, I have discovered that there are few proteins and vegetables that cannot be roasted to perfection in a matter of minutes. A wonderful idea is to roast a few different types of vegetables at a time and utilize leftovers another day in salads, grain or bean dishes, with eggs… you get the gist.

Today, beets are among the vegetables roasted on my trusty, parchment-lined sheet trays. Tonight, we will have a beet and orange salad and tomorrow night a beet salad with Mediterranean flair. Feel free to change ingredients in each recipe to accommodate what needs to be used in your refrigerator. The two recipes stay true to general flavor profiles but often change slightly to utilize what is on hand. Our salads and meals in evolve based on what we have or need to use- waste not, want not.

My husband adores beets and will be thrilled with two nights beet-eating heaven. Honestly, I used to hate beets.

The distaste probably stemmed childhood memories of opening cans of salty, mushy beets. The hunger, the cans and the loneliness enveloping it all. Beets were better than many alternatives in our pantry. The dreaded stockpile of markedly sweet, dinted cans of jellied cranberry sauce (purchased for ten cents a can after Thanksgiving) come to mind. I still avoid the best homemade cranberry sauces but have developed a fondness for my previous foe, the beet.

This humble, purple root vegetable has been reclaimed.

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Mediterranean Beet Salad

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Beet and Orange Salad

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Roasted Beets (in this case, soaking up a scrumptious vinaigrette) from my Instagram (@shannakward)

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Beet and Orange Salad (with a twist- this time incorporating sweet, succulent cherries- yum!) from my Instagram (@shannakward)

Do you hear that? It was a bunch or three of beets, calling out to you (“roast me, eat me, enjoy me!”).

Read on and discover an easy, no-fail recipe for roasted beets. Then, call those roasted beets to arms! They will perform double-duty in a duo of delicious, decadent, delectable and diverse salad recipes.

Sorry, I couldn’t resist the alliteration….


Print

Basic Roasted Beets 

Makes 8 beets

Ingredients:

8 beets, rinsed well (reserve beet tops/greens to sauté or roast later)

olive oil

salt and cracked black pepper

aluminum foil

sheet tray

Preparation:

  • Preheat the oven to 425•F.
  • Place each beet on a large piece of aluminum foil.
  • Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  • Wrap each beet tightly, cinching each piece at the top.
  • Place packets cinched side up on a sheet try and roast until tender, about 45 minutes to one hour.
  • Cool beets in the foil packets.
  • Rub off skins and remove the hard tops and bottoms.

Print

Beet and Orange Salad

Serves 4

Ingredients:

4 roasted beets, peeled and cut into bite-sized chunks

1 cup halved heirloom tomatoes

4 baby clementines, peeled and cut into halves (or segmented)

6 cups of packed kale (about 5 ounces)

4 oz. goat cheese

1/3 cup roasted, unsalted walnuts, chopped

4 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

 4 Tablespoons lemon juice

1 Tablespoon finely chopped shallot (optional)

1 tsp. dijon mustard

1 Tbsp. finely chopped fresh parsley (or 1 tsp. dried)

dash of salt and cracked black pepper

Preparation:

  • In a salad bowl, mix the lemon juice, shallot, mustard, parsley, salt and pepper with a wire whisk.
  • Stream in the olive oil, whisking constantly.
  • Taste and adjust seasoning accordingly.
  • Place the kale, tomatoes and oranges in the bowl and toss well.
  • Sprinkle the walnuts and goat cheese on top, give two or three very gentle tosses, and serve.

Mediterranean Beet Salad

Serves 4

Ingredients:

4 roasted beets, peeled and cut into bite-sized chunks

1 cup halved cherry tomatoes

1 yellow pepper, cored, seeded and diced

1 orange pepper, cored, seeded and diced

6 cups of packed tender greens or spinach (about 5 ounces)

1/4 cup capers

1/4 cup olives, such as Cerignola or Castelvetrano, pitted and quartered (optional)

4 ounces Grana Padano, Parmigiano Reggiano, or a similar hard, aged cheese, grated

4 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

4 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar

1 Tablespoon finely chopped shallot (optional)

1 tsp. dijon mustard

1 tsp. chopped, fresh oregano (or 1 tsp. dry)

dash of salt and cracked black pepper

Preparation:

  • In a salad bowl, mix the lemon juice, shallot, mustard, oregano, salt and pepper with a wire whisk.
  • Stream in the olive oil, whisking constantly.
  • Taste and adjust seasoning accordingly.
  • Place the beets, greens, tomatoes and peppers in the bowl and toss well.
  • Sprinkle the capers, olives and cheese on top, give two or three very gentle tosses, and serve.

 

shannaward.com (2013-2016). Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without expressed and written permission from this blog’s author, Shanna Koenigsdorf Ward, and/or owner is strictly and completely prohibited.

 

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31 thoughts on “A Tale of Two Days of Beets, Two Ways

  1. 3 Amazing beet recipes, ….I love them all! I love roasting hope grown Beets but never wrapper them in foil before,…I always roast them.perled & cut up,into wedges. Why is that?

  2. Thanks for sharing these two recipes for roasted beets. I tend to glaze the roasted beets with balsamic, honey, thyme and olive oil. They are always delicious and your orange beet salad sounds like the perfect way to use them.

  3. Shanna, these are beautiful dishes! I’ve often wondered something, and touched on this in a blog post once. Are beets really roasted if they’re in foil? I’ve always wanted to peel them, chop them, and then roast them, just like you would any other vegetable. Why do we put them in foil? So they’re more steam-cooked, but not really roasted/caramelization. Just a thought….

    1. Mimi, you raise an excellent point! The beets wrapped in foil have a neutral taste and are very light in flavor. They really let the salad dressing shine. They certainly taste different than beets that are peeled, chopped, tossed in oil and seasoning and then roasted. Both ways are great routes, and the former is probably “cooked” in the oven and not technically roasted (because the surface is not exposed to dry heat). Still, my intention to use the oven is the same- an easy shortcut for a busy home cook. Thank you for bringing intellect and knowledge to Curls and Carrots!

      1. It’s just that I’ve been calling them roasted beets myself, and yet they really weren’t! I have yet to roast them like I would potatoes, probably peeling first, tho.

  4. I have updated the title of the recipe to reflect what you have brought to light. These beets are cooked in an oven, but not roasted, according to the strict culinary definition. I am so glad when readers enrich my knowledge of cooking, and I have enjoyed learning from your blog over the past two and a half years!

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