There are 2 kinds of salads in my world. One - a salad stuffed to the brim with greens and one with grains that's more of a rice/quinoa/farro salad bowl. Both of which can be topped with my all time favorite basil vinaigrette! This Goat Cheese, Roasted Beet and Farro Salad situation is the latter and it's my current obsession!
When I first waltzed into culinary school 8 years ago I didn't know how to cook or eat mushrooms. Steak has a rarity for me. And the idea of cooking fish probably would have brought me to tears. My culinary school instructor promptly told me I needed to get over my picky eating ways otherwise I'd never make it in the food world. I quickly learned how to LOVE mushrooms (now I'm obsessed), make the best steak and marinade ever and cook fish for a big ass group of people without fear!
There was one thing that still freaked me out until recently and that was beets! It wasn't until about a year ago when I really started to develop a love for beets, particularly roasted beet, and all they can add to a dish. They are dense and meaty so you can use them in salads and actually be full. They are loaded with all sorts of things that are good for you like vitamin C, fiber, and essential minerals like potassium and manganese. I roast them every week and keep them in the fridge to throw into any side dish or salad and I'm hooked! Today they are starring in a simple grain salad with farro, greens, goat cheese, fennel and the most addictive basil vinaigrette you'll ever taste! It's the perfect thing to make tomorrow and then take for lunches this week! You're welcome in advance!!
Goat Cheese, Roasted Beet and Farro Salad
- 2-3 small Red Beets
- 2-3 small Golden Beets
- 2-3 handfuls of arugula
- 1 cup cooked farro
- ½ cup crumbled goat cheese
- 1 avocado cut into thin strips or wedges
- ½ fennel bulb trimmed and shaved thin
- Pepitas for garnish
- 1 recipe Basil Vinaigrette
- Heat the oven to 400°F.
- Slice off the beet leaves close to the tip of the beet. Discard the beet greens. Scrub the beets thoroughly, then wrap them loosely in aluminum foil.
- Transfer the wrapped beets to a baking sheet. Roast for 50-60 minutes. Check the beets every 20 minutes or so. If they are starting to look dry or are scorching on the bottoms, dribble a tablespoon of water over the beets before re-wrapping. Beets are done when a fork or skewer slides easily to the middle of the beet. Small beets will cook more quickly than large beets.
- Let the beets cool enough to handle. Hold one of the beets in a paper towel and use the edges of the paper to rub the skin away. The skin should peel away easily; if it doesn't, the beets likely need to cook for a little longer. Peel the remaining beets and then slice them into wedges.
- Combine the arugula, beet wedges, farro, shaved fennel, avocado and goat cheese on a large serving platter and drizzle with basil vinaigrette. Sprinkle the pepitas on top and serve immediately.