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Asparagus, Roasted-Beet, and Goat Cheese Salad

Yield Makes 6 servings

Ingredients

  • 18 small red beets (about 6 pounds)
  • 1 cup olive oil
  • 1/3 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper, divided
  • 60 small fresh asparagus spears
  • 1 (11-ounce) goat cheese log
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh chives
  • Cracked pepper (optional)
  • Chopped fresh chives (optional)
  • Gourmet salad greens (optional)

How to Make It

  1. Arrange beets in a single layer on a lightly greased baking sheet; bake at 425° for 40 to 45 minutes or until tender, stirring every 15 minutes. Cool beets completely.

  2. Whisk together oil, vinegar, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon ground pepper in a small bowl.

  3. Peel beets, and cut into wedges. Toss together beets, 1/2 cup vinaigrette, remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, and remaining 1/4 teaspoon ground pepper; set aside.

  4. Snap off tough ends of asparagus, discarding ends; cook asparagus in boiling water to cover 1 to 2 minutes or until crisp-tender. Plunge into ice water to stop the cooking process, and drain. Combine asparagus and 1/2 cup vinaigrette; set aside.

  5. Cut cheese into 6 equal slices. Place 1 cheese slice in a 3-inch round cutter or ring mold; sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon chives. Press chives into cheese; remove cutter. Repeat procedure with remaining cheese and 2 1/2 teaspoons chives.

  6. Arrange asparagus over cheese. Surround with beets, and drizzle with remaining vinaigrette. Sprinkle with cracked pepper and chives, if desired; serve with salad greens, if desired.