Roasted Red Beets, Red Onion and Blue Cheese Salad

 

We’re home after the Fort Collins farmers’ market, taking time to put some chicken in the oven and ready to make a fantastic side of roasted red beets.  It’s like eating candy…

Roasted Red Beets, Red Onion and Blue Cheese Salad with a Balsamic Vinaigrette

When you buy beets with the greens attached you are actually getting two veggies for the price of one. Beets (the roots) can be simmered in stews, roasted, steamed, boiled or braised.  They can also be used uncooked and shredded for salads or squeezed into juice. Their greens can be sauteed or cooked like any other green (ie. spinach) and are very nutritious.

This is another family favorite…where we LOVE roasted red beets. 

Roasted Beets, Red Onion and Blue Cheese Salad With a Balsamic Vinaigrette – Serves 6

For the dressing:

  •             3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  •             1 teaspon Dijon  mustard
  •             1 teaspoon minced garlic
  •             ½ teaspoon salt
  •             ½ teaspoon large grind black pepper

In a small bowl, combine balsamic vinegar, mustard, garlic, salt and pepper.  Whisk to blend. While continuing to whisk, slowly add olive oil. Set aside. 

For the beets:

  •             12 small beets (about 3 bunches)
  •             3 tablespoons olive oil
  •             1 teaspoon minced garlic
  •             ½ teaspoon salt
  •             ½ teaspoon large grind black pepper

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Remove greens and reserve those for cooking later. Wash beets well, peel with a paring knife.  In a medium baking dish, toss beets with olive oil, garlic, salt, and pepper. Bake beets at 350 degrees for 45 to 55 minutes or until beets are tender when pierced with a knife. Remove from the oven, cool.

For the salad: 

  •              12 small beets, roasted and peeled
  •             ¾ cup red onion, chopped
  •             ¾ cup crumbled blue cheese
  •             6 cups Spring mix greens

In a large salad bowl, combine beets red onion, blue cheese and greens. Drizzle with dressing, toss, and serve immediately. 

Shopping: Choose small, firm Colorado red beets with bright green leaves. Smaller beets tend to be more tender and sweeter.  Pass up beets that have scales or spots. To ensure even cooking, select beets that are uniform in size. 

Storing: Upon arriving home, trim the leaves 2 inches from the root. The leaves will suck moisture from the beets. Do not trim the tail. If you like, you can store the leaves in a separate plastic bag in the vegetable crisper of your refrigerator. Use these leaves within 2 days. When placed in plastic bags and stored in the crisper of your refrigerator, beets 3 weeks if kept dry.   

Washing and cooking:  Wash beets gently as their skin is fragile.  If the skin is not broken during the washing process or removed for cooking, beets will retain more nutrition and color.  The skin of beets will easily rub off under cold running water or when rubbed gently with a paper towel. Leave at least an inch of the leaf stem when you cook beets.  Remove the leaf stem before serving.   (personally, we usually peel before cooking, but you can do either).

Enjoy~

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