Beet Salad With Goat Cheese Toasts

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.

PREPARATION STEPS

  1. Cook 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.)
  2. Let 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.
  3. While 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.
  4. Prepare 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.
  5. Whisk 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.
  6. Thinly 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.

INGREDIENTS

  • 4 medium golden beets (the size of a tennis ball), trimmed and scrubbed
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 small shallot, minced
  • 1 small garlic clove, grated
  • 3 tablespoons sherry vinegar, plus more as needed
  • ½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon chopped thyme
  • ½ teaspoon chopped rosemary
  • ½ teaspoon finely sliced chives
  • ½ teaspoon lemon zest
  • 4 ounces fresh goat cheese, at room temperature
  • 8 to 10 thin slices of baguette
  • 1 medium fennel bulb, trimmed

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