Roasted Beet Salad Recipe with Garlic-Cumin Vinaigrette
This roasted beet salad recipe combines the natural sweetness of beets with a garlicky vinaigrette and a kick of jalapeno. The addition of creamy goat cheese rounds out the dish.
When I owned beachgreens produce home delivery service, I discovered that many people had a negative memory of vegetables from their childhood, and beets were often the shining star of these memories. I received many an email over the years, reminiscing about terrible canned or boiled-to-death beets that they were forced to eat as a child. When I would include beet recipes in the weekly recipe newsletters, it was often these simple light beet recipes that were a game changer for people’s impressions of beets, and their impression of cooking and eating vegetables overall. “If these beets are delicious, I bet these other veggies could be too!”
On another note, I am a stickler for efficiency, both in and out of the kitchen. If I can combine two tasks in one, I’m all over it. I tackle beets in one of two ways. Either 1) Cook the beets as soon as I bring them home from the market, otherwise they have a tendency to languish in the fridge as a task that I won’t get to or, 2) Cook beets for the next day, during dinner. For example, while preparing Monday night’s dinner, I’ll take a few minutes and clean the beets and prepare them for Tuesday night’s dinner, including roasting. As part of cleaning up from dinner, I will peel beets and complete step 1 of this recipe. This roasted beet salad recipe with garlic-cumin vinaigrette always tastes better the next day, after marinating overnight in the fridge.
- 1 pound red or golden beets, (about 3 medium-sized)
- 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 4 garlic cloves, peeled
- 1 jalapeno, deveined and deseeded, cut into chunks
- 1 1/2 teaspoons cumin seeds
- 3 tbsp freshly squeezed orange juice
- zest of an one medium-large orange (1 Tablespoon)
- 1 tbsp honey (optional)
- 1/2 teaspoon salt , or more to taste
- freshly ground black pepper , 5 grinds
- 5 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tbsp goat cheese , crumbled
- 2 tbsp chopped mint
Preheat oven to 375°. If the beets have greens attached, remove and save for another use, such as the Green Power Frittata recipe. Cut beets in half. Place cut side down on a baking sheet and surround with just enough water to cover the bottom of the pan in a shallow layer. Cover with foil, and cook in oven until the skins remove easily from the beets, 45 minutes-1 hour. Let cool, and remove the skin. Cut into ½” slices. Place in a shallow bowl, and while still slightly warm, sprinkle with vinegar and salt.
In a food processor or blender, combine garlic, jalapeno, cumin seeds, orange juice, orange zest, honey, and salt. Process into a paste. With the motor running, add olive oil. Taste and adjust seasoning. You want the flavor the to be strong, as it will mellow out when added to beets.
If serving immediately, pour vinaigrette over cooked beets. Otherwise, hold off until just before serving to use vinaigrette.
To serve, layer beets on a platter in an overlapping pattern. Sprinkle with goat cheese and mint.