Braised Beet Salad with Baked Goat Cheese

In recent weeks Michael and I have transformed to cable-less freaks of nature to Verizon Fios drones!

Just kidding, but we did get cable and now I just can not turn off the food network!  It has been very inspiring and now all I want to do is cook.  It has always been a hobby of mine, but lately I am enjoying it more than ever and doing it as much as I have time.

Last night I made a braised beet salad with baked goat cheese.  The truth is – I only eat beets so that I can eat goat cheese.  Goat cheese is a slight obsession of mine.  Michael was craving beets (Who craves beets?).  So it was a win for everyone!

I have made mention before to our favorite cooking show (not on the food network) called America’s Test Kitchen.   These two recipes come from the Test Kitchen.  You can watch re-runs of recent episodes on Amazon Prime Instant Video.  Unfortunately they force you to join a membership in order to watch or grab recipes directly from their website.

Here is what you need:

For the beet salad –

  • 3-4 Beets, well cleaned, and halved.
  • 3 tablespoons white vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 shallot, sliced thin
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 tablespoon fresh mint, chopped
  • fresh thyme, chopped
  • 1/4-1/2 almonds, chopped and toasted

For the goat cheese –

  • 2 oz goat cheese ( or preferred amount of goat cheese, I did 1 oz per person, split into a total of 4 balls)
  • 1 egg, whisked
  • 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
  • 1 cup panko bread crumbs, toasted
  • 1 teaspoon coarse dry garlic (or garlic powder)
  • 1-2 tablespoon of your favorite herbs, chopped (I used basil, lemon thyme, and parsley because its what I had)

This recipe will take you about an hour.

  1. After cleaning your beets, remove the tops and bottoms.  Place in a saute pan with high sides and top with 1 and 1/4 cup water (and salt).  Bring to a boil, then cover, and move the heat to low.  Allow to simmer for 45 minutes or until a knife falls through the center with no pressure.
  2. Preheat oven to 475 degrees.  Whisk egg and dijon. In a separate bowl Mix bread crumbs and coarse dry garlic.
  3. Roll your goat cheese into balls.  Roll balls into/on top of chopped fresh herbs.    Toss cheese ball into egg mixture.    Toss cheese ball into bread crumbs.  Press on centers to create a disk shape.  Place in freezer for 30 minutes.
  4. Remove beets from skillet and let cool.  Once cool, use a paper towel to pull the skins off of the beets.  Add light pressure with the towel and twist like a door knob.
  5. Continue to cook beet juice/water until it becomes a syrup consistency (when you drag your spatula through the glaze, it will leave a trail behind).  You may need to bring your heat up to get to this point.
  6. Add vinegar and brown sugar.  Cook until a full glaze.   Then pull from heat.  When cool stir in shallot, lemon zest, salt and pepper to taste. This is your dressing.
  7. Place cheese in oven for 7-10 minutes.  Keep a close eye.
  8. Cut beets into 1/2″ pieces.  Toss in dressing.  Top with mint, thyme, and almonds.

VIOLA!  I chose to set my beet salad and baked goat cheese up top of arugula with olive oil and sea salt – but really it was not necessary.  I was hoping to turn the recipe to a summer dish with the arugula – but it took away from the star : beets.  Michael suggested a little less lemon zest next time around, so that is something to consider while you cook! My opinion?  NEEDS MORE GOAT CHEESE !






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