Roast Beetroot with Fennel Tops, Toasted Walnut and Crème Fraîche Dressing

There was a big family get together this weekend, and I was given the task of sorting out the starter. Mum bought a mixture of golden and red beetroot for me to make a salad from. I sealed them up in tinfoil with a bit of thyme, some sea salt, olive oil and baked them, and the resulting flavour was intense and nutty. When sliced into slim rounds and laid flat, they made a very pretty salad with the contrasting colours of the two varieties, garnished with fennel fronds and walnuts. Apart from this, there was a mackerel pâté, celeriac remoulade and thinly-sliced, toasted 66% rye bread from the Cake Shop Bakery, which was tasty.

Ingredients:

a selection of golden and red beetroot, gently washed and trimmed of their leaves

some thyme (optional)

some fennel tops

handful of chopped walnuts, toasted

Dressing:

1 teaspoon, horseradish sauce

2 teaspoons, creme fraîche

good squeeze lemon juice

4 tablespoons olive oil

salt and pepper

How I made it:

Seal the beetroots in tinfoil with thyme, sea salt and olive oil. Bake for 1 1/2 hours, check if cooked by sticking in a knife to check it’s cooked. Peel by rubbing all over under a tap until the skin is gone. Then slice thinly into circles and arrange flat on a large plate. Whisk all the dressing ingredients together and taste for seasoning. Garnish sliced beetroot with the sprigs of fennel, walnuts and drizzle the dressing over.

Eaten with:

Mackerel pâté and celeriac remoulade. Thinly sliced rye toast.

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