Guests will go crazy for this light, refreshing beet and orange salad, and best of all, they’ll still have room left for the main course. A simple dressing of hazelnut oil, coriander and orange juice adds a touch of sweet, floral flavor.
1 pound beets, preferably very small ones
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
Salt and freshly ground pepper
20 large pearl onions, about 1/2 pound
2 oranges, peeled and cut into wedges
2 tablespoons hazelnut oil
1 tablespoon coarsely chopped fresh coriander leaves (also known as cilantro) plus extra for garnish
1/2 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
2 tablespoons hazelnuts, toasted and peeled
1-ounce pecorino, optional, grated on medium-sized holes of box grater
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
Cut the stems and tails off the beets. Do not peel. Line the bottom of a baking pan with foil. Place the beets in the pan and toss them with half of the olive oil, salt and pepper. Roast for 25 minutes.
Trim both ends off the pearl onions. Then toss them with remaining olive oil and salt and pepper. Add pearl onions to the beets and roast an additional 15 minutes, until beets and onions are tender.
Peel and remove the membranes from the oranges with a sharp paring knife. Cut the oranges in half lengthwise and then crosswise into thin slices. Seed the slices, if necessary.
Peel and quarter the beets. Lay the beets on a large platter. Top the beets with the orange pieces. Scatter the roasted onions around the beats.
In a medium bowl, combine the hazelnut oil, coriander, and orange juice. Whisk until well combined and season with salt and pepper.
Drizzle the dressing on top and sprinkle with coriander, toasted hazelnuts and grated cheese. Serve immediately.