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Roasted Beet Sandwiches with Herbed Goat Cheese

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6 sandwiches

  • by from Fine Cooking
    Issue 113

A beet sandwich may sound strange, but take one bite of this one and you’ll be sold. Creamy, peppery goat cheese, sweet beets, and assertive arugula are an out-of-this-world flavor combination, especially when served on hearty rustic bread.

  • 8 medium beets, trimmed
  • 1 Tbs. vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 small cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup thinly sliced chives
  • 1-1/2 Tbs. finely chopped fresh tarragon
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 8 oz. fresh goat cheese, softened
  • 3/4 cup (one 7.5 oz. container) crème fraîche
  • 1 tsp. chopped pink peppercorns
  • 6 4-inch pieces soft-crusted ciabatta bread
  • 3 cups baby arugula

Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 375°F. Arrange the beets in a baking dish that’s just large enough to accommodate them, such as an 8-inch square glass baking dish. Drizzle the beets with the vegetable oil and turn to coat well. Cover the dish with foil. Roast the beets until tender when pierced with a paring knife, about 1 hour. Let cool.

Peel the beets and slice 1/4 inch thick. Combine the beets, olive oil, garlic, 1 Tbs. of the chives, and 1/2 Tbs. of the tarragon in a medium bowl. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

In a medium bowl, combine the goat cheese, crème fraîche, peppercorns, and the remaining 3 Tbs. chives and 1 Tbs. tarragon. Season to taste with salt and pepper and refrigerate until ready to use.

Position a rack 6 inches from the broiler element and heat the broiler on high. Split the ciabatta pieces and lightly toast them cut sides up directly on the rack under the broiler.

Divide the beet mixture evenly over the bottom halves of the bread. Drop the cheese mixture by spoonfuls over the beets. Top the cheese with the arugula, dividing evenly. Place the top halves of the ciabatta over the arugula and press gently. Cut the sandwiches in half on the diagonal and serve.

Make Ahead Tips

Make ahead: The goat cheese can be prepared up to 1 week ahead. The beets can be roasted up to 3 days ahead, and mixed with the oil and seasoning up to 1 day ahead. Keep everything refrigerated until ready to use.

Serving Suggestions

Keep the sides simple and easy. Serve with Sautéed Broccoli Raab with Balsamic Vinegar or Green Beans with Mustard-Tarragon Vinaigrette.

Very good. More work than I anticipated and not something I think I'll crave when beet season comes again. Worth a try though.

I made this as a light dinner for two, and we both really enjoyed it. I prepped everything a few hours ahead, then assembled the sandwiches just before eating. Both easy, and yummy, this recipe could be adapted into an appetizer for a special occasion.

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