Roasted Beet & Goat Cheese Salad with Spiced Pecans and Homemade Shallot Vinaigrette

0426141822b

Want to make a salad that is DELICIOUS and has lots of veggies, healthy fats, and some protein? Keep on reading.

This is one of those salads that is actually satisfying; it’s FULL of flavor. I’d call it a side salad because it doesn’t have a meat in it, but you could absolutely add in some chicken and call it a complete meal.

The ingredients are pretty simple. Greens, beets, goat cheese, pecans. mmmmm goat cheese. I could live on that stuff.

Anyway, those are your biggies. I also made a vinegrette, but you could certainly buy a pre-made dressing at the store if you wanted to make this even easier!

Let’s dive right into this– here’s the recipe:

Roasted Beet & Goat Cheese Salad with Spiced Pecans and a Shallot Vinaigrette
Makes about 8 side-servings.

Dressing:
1/3 cup EVOO (extra-virgin olive oil)
1/4 balsamic vinegar
3 Tablespoons finely sliced shallots
1 Tablespoon honey
salt & pepper

Directions:
1) Whisk together the EVOO, balsamic, honey, and shallots. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Set aside. I poured mine into a mason jar for easy shaking.

For Spiced Pecans:
1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon cloves
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1 egg white
1 Tablespoon water
1/4 teaspoon vanilla
8oz (2 cups) pecan halves

Directions:
2) Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with foil and spray lightly with non-stick cooking spray.
3) In a medium-sized bowl, combined the sugar and spices. Set aside.
4) In another bowl, beat the egg white, water, and vanilla until white and frothy. It will expand in size. Pour the pecans into the egg white mixture, and stir.
5) Scoop the pecans out of the egg white mixture bowl and into the sugar mixture bowl. Use a spatula to stir the pecans and evenly distribute all of the sugary goodness.
6) Spread the pecans out on the baking sheet, and bake in the preheated oven for 30 minutes, stirring half-way through.
7) Place the baking sheet on a wire cooling rack and allow to cool completely. (I also recommend trying them warm…yum.)

Salad:
16 oz peeled and cooked beets (I buy two 8-oz packages from Trader Joe’s– in the refrigerated foods section.)
8 oz goat cheese log, crumbled
Spiced pecans (recipe below)
10-12oz bag (or two 5-6oz bags) spring mix salad
salt
pepper

Directions:

8) Start by roasting the beets. Bump your oven temperature up to 450 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with foil. Set aside.
9) If your beets are whole, slice them up and place them in a bowl. Drizzle just enough of the dressing over them to lightly coat them. Stir so that the dressing is evenly distibuted on the beets. Spread them out on the prepared baking sheet. Roast in the preheated oven for 15-20 minutes, until they start to caramelize a bit. Remove them from the oven and allow them to cool.
10) While those are roasting, toss together your greens, goat cheese, and pecans. If you’d like, season the whole salad with some salt and pepper to enhance the flavor. Toss in your beets when they’re cool.
11) If you’re serving the salad right away, drizzle the dressing over and lightly toss everything together, so that it looks like this:

0426141822a

If you aren’t serving it right away, I’d recommend waiting to put the dressing on so that the greens don’t get soggy.
12) Enjoy! I brought this batch to a pre-race potluck pasta dinner…

0426141900turned

Carbs + Salad + Wine = Balanced…right?

Hope you like! 🙂

 

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s