Roasted Yellow Beets Salad Balsamic and Walnut Oil Vinaigrette
By Chef Heidi Allison

Ingredients

Salad

2 Beets (use Yellow Beets) scrubbed and stems cut down to 1 inch from top of bulb
1 tablespoon Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 1/2 cups packaged Lafayette Lettuce Mix (Butter Lettuce and Radicchio)
1 1/2 cups Arugula tough stems removed well washed and spun dry
3 tablespoons Pine Nuts lightly toasted
2 ounces Feta Cheese (preferably French Bulgarian or Israeli)

Salad Dressing

1 clove Organic Garlic peeled and smashed
1/4 teaspoon Kosher Salt
1 Shallots minced
1/4 teaspoon Dijon Mustard
1 tablespoon Balsamic Vinegar
4 tablespoons Walnut Oil
1 pinch Sugar
1/4 teaspoon Freshly Ground Black Pepper 

Directions

Preheat oven to 375°F. 

Rub beets with olive oil and place in a large piece of aluminum foil. 

Fold up foil to enclose beets and place in the oven. 

Roast until soft, about 1 hour (You should be able to slide the tip of a sharp knife easily into the largest beet). 

Remove beets from foil and let cool. 

Rub off skins with your fingers and discard. 

Julienne beets to ¼ inch thickness. 

(The beets can be roasted a day ahead and stored whole in a zip lock bag in the refrigerator until ready to use in salad).

In a medium mortar, add garlic and salt. 

Smash with pestle a few times to form a paste. 

Add minced shallot and smash with pestle to create a paste. 

Add Dijon mustard and stir with pestle till incorporated. 

Drizzle walnut oil into mixture, a little at a time, and stir with the pestle until incorporated. 

Add a pinch of sugar, salt and freshly ground black pepper and stir.

In a large wooden bowl, add the beets, greens, nuts and cheese. 

Add half of the dressing and toss to coat. 

Place salad on plates and top with freshly ground black pepper. 

Serve immediately.

Notes from Author, Heidi Allison

There are three caveats to properly roasting beets: don’t peel them, keep the root tail on and leave 1-2 inches of the stem intact to ensure that the betalains pigments stay inside the beets. Once the beets are cooked, simply slip off the skins with your fingers and cut of the stem. If boiling, add acidic ingredients (vinegar) to the water which keeps the colors vibrant (prevents red beets from turning a dull brick red) and enhances the sweet flavor of the beets.