Beets with Blue Cheese and Candied Walnuts

by Mar 11, 2014


The beautiful and seasonally inspired San Francisco Ferry Plaza Farmers’ Market Cookbook (by Christopher Hirsheimer and Peggy Knickerbocker) inspired me to roast some beets this week (…have some disposable gloves on hand and your fingers won’t even turn purple!)  I paired this salad with mini BLT sandwiches (thanks to Artisan for the bacon, and Wild Crumb for the demi baguettes) and a lovely Chinon from Kermit Lynch to celebrate “springing forward” on the clocks yesterday.


Beets with Blue Cheese and Candied Walnuts


  • 6-8 medium-sized beets, greens trimmed off
  • 1/4 cup crumbled blue cheese (try Point Reyes Blue)
  • 1/4 cup roasted or candied walnuts (see recipe at Ripe)
  • arugula or baby kale
  • Vinaigrette:
  • 1 shallot, finely minced
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Candied Walnuts:
  • 8 oz. walnut halves
  • 1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • pinch of sea salt


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Place beets in glass baking dish, add water to about 1/4 inch, cover tightly with foil and bake for about 45 minutes, until beets are fork-tender.
  2. Make vinaigrette: In glass measuring cup, mix shallot with vinegars, and a little salt and peppers, and let stand at least 5 minutes to mellow. Whisk in the olive oil.
  3. Make candied walnuts: Preheat oven to 250 degrees F. In large heavy skillet, combine sugar and water over medium-high heat and cook, until sugar dissolves and syrup comes to a boil. Add the walnuts, butter, salt and cook, stirring constantly, until syrup coats the nuts and almost no liquid syrup is left in the pan. Spread the nuts out on a baking sheet and put in the oven to toast for about 15 minutes. Store air tight for up to 2 weeks.
  4. Slice beets and drizzle with a couple tablespoons of vinaigrette. Toss greens with a couple tablespoons of vinaigrette, lay on platter and top with blue cheese crumbles, beets, and candied walnuts.

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