If a salad can be called rich, this is a rich salad. Beets have a sweet, dark earthiness, especially when roasted, that gets paired here with their own spicy green tops, shredded and cooked with garlic. We crumbled in a little Gorgonzola for savor, too, giving this salad a heft and a richness that we really enjoyed.
The thing that pushed this salad over the top for us, though, was using fresh orange juice for the dressing. We simmered it with vinegar into a concentration of sweet orange that spiked up the dark beet flavors beautifully.
Grated Beet Salad with Blue Cheese
8 small beets
4 cloves of garlic, minced
1/2 cup fresh orange juice
1/4 cup cider vinegar
2 tablespoons sugar
2 scallions sliced
4 ounces Gorgonzola
Preheat oven to 350ºF. Scrub the beets and separate them from their tops. Line a heavy baking pan with foil and put the beets inside then drizzle with olive oil. Roast for about 60 minutes or until barely tender when pierced with a fork. Let cool, then rub off the skins with a paper towel. Grate the beets with a coarse box grater and set aside.
Boil the fresh orange juice with the vinegar and sugar until reduced by half. Set aside to cool.
Wash the beet greens thoroughly to remove all sand and grit, then slice into fine ribbons. Heat a little olive oil in a heavy frying pan and cook the garlic over medium until golden and soft. Add the beet greens and saute until tender. Let cool slightly.
Toss the grated beets, greens, cooled orange juice dressing, scallions and crumbled Gorgonzola cheese. Taste and season with salt and pepper.