I will admit that I have a posted quite a few recipes that involve beets (try my white wine marinated beets or roasted beet, chicken and goat cheese salad), but I just can't get over them at the moment! I've even written a blog about the fabulous root vegetable, The Beetdown on Beets. Of all my beet recipes though, this is my favourite. It is also the most complex. I guess sometimes the saying, "the more you put in, the more you get out" really does ring true.
To make this recipe less intimidating, I suggest prepping each layer in advance (except for the avocado, if you cut it too far in advance it will brown), then lying them all out when you are ready to assemble.
For the plating I used a ring mold to keep everything nicely tucked into each layer - a must have tool if you are looking to step up your plating game. Don't be discouraged if your first tower or two are not perfect, they will still taste delicious! And once you have the technique down you will really be able to impress your friends and family with is stunning appetizer, it is an absolute hit every time I make it. Post your photos of your completed stack in the comments below, I'd love to see them!
Beet, Goats Cheese & Avocado Stack
A vibrant and fresh appetizer to showcase the beauty of the beet.
- BEET LAYER:
- 2 medium sized beets
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1/2 c. olive oil
- 1/4 c. apple cider vinegar
- 1/4 c. white vinegar
- 3 Tbs kosher salt
- 1 tsp sugar
- GOATS CHEESE LAYER:
- 6 oz goats cheese
- 2 sage leaves
- 1 tsp fresh rosemary
- 1 tsp fresh thyme
- 1 tsp fresh chives
- 3 Tbs olive oil
- Salt & Pepper to taste
- FOR THE STACK:
- 1 Avocado
- 1/2 c. walnuts
- 1 Tbs chives
- Olive Oil
- Pepper, to taste
- Step 1 FOR THE BEETS:
- Step 2 Preheat oven to 400 F
- Step 3 Wash and trim your beets so they have a slight flat surface on both the top and bottom (where the roots and stems are) about the size of a nickle
- Step 4 Wrap beets in aluminum foil, set on a tray and bake for 1 hour. Don't forget to put them on a tray! I made this mistake the first time I cooked beets and their juices dripped all over the bottom of my oven - what a bright purple, stained mess!
- Step 5 Take beets out of the oven and let cool.
- Step 6 Once cooled, remove the skin of the beets using a paper towel. Warning! These babies can dye your hands (and counters) a bright purple - wash your hands well afterward with hot soapy water, or use gloves, and make sure to use a surface that is stain-resistant.
- Step 7 Slice the beets into 1/2 inch thick rounds and place into a stain resistant dish.
- Step 8 Combine the minced garlic, olive oil, vinegars and salt into a bowl and pour over the beets. Leave to marinate for at least 3 hours (overnight if possible).
- Step 9 FOR THE GOATS CHEESE:
- Step 10 Finely dice the sage, rosemary, thyme and chives. Take some time with this - nobody wants a surprise hunk of sage ruining their meal.
- Step 11 Combine goats cheese, diced herbs and olive oil until smooth. Add salt & pepper to taste.
- Step 12 PREP THE REST
- Step 13 Roast your walnuts in a pan on low to medium-high heat, about 3-4 minutes. Keep a close eye on these guys, with their high fat content they can burn in an instant. Set aside.
- Step 14 Chop chives into 1/4 inch pieces. Set aside
- Step 15 Cut avocado into 1/4 thick slices, then cut those in half lengthwise (you need them to fit inbetween the beets, so they cannot be to long)
- Step 16 TO ASSEMBLE
- Step 17 Using a round 3 inch wide cookie cutter, cut all beet slices into identical rounds.
- Step 18 Place one beet round on a plate. Scoop 1-2 tbs of your goats cheese mixture on top and spread until the edges of the beet. Place your pre-cut avocado slices in a layer on top. Top with another beet.
- Step 19 Complete one more layer, so that the stack starts and ends with a beet (I used a ring mold to keep the stack's shape) .
- Step 20 Sprinkle with roasted walnuts & chives, crack a bit of pepper on top and finish with a drizzle of olive oil.