We had a potluck this week at work for a new occupational therapist at our facility. Since we have a pretty small team, a new team member is kind of a big deal. We’ve actually gone through a lot of staff changes in the past year, which hasn’t been the easiest. Thankfully, our new occupational therapist is pretty awesome. I knew I was going to like her when she brought beets for lunch on her first day.
So when the time came to have our ritual potluck for new therapists, I knew I had to make something with beets. The inspiration for this particular salad comes from a beet, goat cheese, and arugula salad I order at a local Saint Paul restaurant. I just love the combination of the earthy beets, the peppery arugula, crunchy almonds, and creamy goat cheese. After a quick google search I found a recipe that looked similar, and adapted the nuts and cheese to what I wanted. The dressing from the recipe, however, sounded perfect: a simple balsamic vinaigrette with the addition of shallots and honey.
This salad is, without a doubt, even better than the one I order at the restaurant. First of all, there are more beets and in my book the more beets, the better. I also loved the slivered almonds as opposed to the whole almonds that are in the restaurant version. Lastly, the vinaigrette turned out to complement the ingredients perfectly. It was tangy, but not overpowering. Then the creamy goat cheese tops it all off. This salad is my new favorite.
for the dressing:
- 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
- 2 medium shallots finely chopped
- 1 tbsp honey
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- salt and freshly ground black pepper
for the salad:
- 6 medium beets cooked and quartered *(instructions below)
- 5 oz fresh arugula
- 1/2 cup slivered almonds
- 1/4 cup dried cranberries
- 4 ounces soft fresh goat cheese coarsely crumbled
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Line baking sheet with foil and spray with non-stick cooking spray.
- In small bowl, combine balsamic vinegar, shallots, and honey.
- Slowly pour in oil, whisking to combine. Season with salt and pepper.
- Toss the cooked beets in a medium bowl with 1-2 tbsp of dressing, enough to cover the beets.
- Spread on prepared baking sheet and roast 12-15 minutes, until beets are slightly caramelized.
- Let cool.
- Prepare the salad by combining the roasted beets with arugula, almonds, and cranberries.
- Pour dressing over salad and toss to combine.
- Top with crumbled goat cheese. Enjoy!
- *You can cook beets by boiling them for 45-50 minutes, or roasting them by wrapping them in foil, and baking them at 400 degrees F for 50-60 minutes. Once boiled or roasted, the skin should rub right off.