Recipe of the Week | Roasted Beet Salad with Fennel and Shaved Asparagus

Roasted Beet with Fennel Salad | Photo Credit Randolph Graham


Beets have a naturally nutty flavor and, when roasted, a wonderfully sweet taste. They are very low in saturated fat and cholesterol and high in vitamin C, vitamin K, potassium, copper, manganese, Folate and fiber.

Fennel is crunchy and slightly sweet. Like beets, it is a good source of vitamin C, potassium, copper, manganese, Folate, and fiber. In addition, it brings iron and vitamin B3 to the plate (so to speak). 

Asparagus has a wonderfully different texture when “shaved” raw and added to salads. Like beets and fennel above, it is full of nutrition including vitamin K, selenium, Folate, copper, vitamins A, E, B1, B2, B3 and B6. It is also a good source of fiber, zinc, iron and phosphorus.

Suffice it to say that this earthy salad packs a large nutritional wallop. I like to serve it alongside a nice vegetarian entrée for dinner or, when served with fresh French bread, as a nice light lunch all by itself.



1 bunch red beets

1 bunch gold beets

2 large fennel bulbs

4 asparagus stalks (the larger around the better)

2 tablespoons red wine vinegar

4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

10 ounces arugula

4 ounces aged goat cheese (crumbled)

1 cup walnut pieces

Salt and pepper to taste



Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

Thoroughly wash and then peel the beets. Slice them ¼-inch thick. Place beets in a large baggie with the olive oil and shake to coat beet slices evenly. Pour beets onto two large baking sheets and roast in the oven for 25 minutes. Remove beets from oven and turn each on over. Return to oven and bake for another 20 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside. Make sure they are room temperature (if not chilled) before plating.

Trim a ½ slice from the bottom of each fennel bulb and remove large tough sections of bulb. Thinly slice the remaining fennel and remove the “core” from each slice. Set aside.

Trim the “woody” 2-3 inches off the end of each asparagus stalk. Use a potato peeler to shave thin ribbons of asparagus. Set aside.

Mix red wine vinegar and olive oil together. Set this dressing aside.


When ready to serve, place a handful of arugula on 4 separate chilled salad plates. Place beets, then fennel slices, and lastly asparagus shavings on arugula. Sprinkle goat cheese and toasted walnuts on top and drizzle with dressing. Add salt and pepper to taste and serve while plates are still cold.

Chef Randy’s latest book: Ojai Valley Make Ahead Cookbook on Sale at AMAZON

For additional recipes, see Chef Randy’s website at

Chef Randy has been a vegetarian for over 40 years and eats local and organic grain, fresh fruit, and vegetables as much as possible. He is known locally as the “Healthy Chef.” His column, Chef Randy, is syndicated in California newspapers. See his website at for more recipes.

Visit his author’s page on Amazon for culinary inspiration!  

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c e voigtsberger

Reasonable minds can differ. I certainly wouldn’t describe the flavor of beets as “nutty” — unless I were “nutty”.

William Hicks

Hahahahah! Beets are an acquired taste. You either like or loath them.

William Hicks

No wonder it sounds so nutritious, it is a blend of some of my favorite tastes.