Roasted Baby Beets with Passion Fruit Gelée, Horseradish and Ice Wine Mignonette

Chef Tony Conte of The Oval Room – Washington, D.C.
Adapted by
Yield: 4 Servings


8 baby red beets
8 baby yellow beets
8 baby candy stripe beets
1 sprig thyme
1 teaspoon sage
1 Tablespoon red wine vinegar
3 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 Tablespoon water
Salt and white pepper, to taste


8 shallots, minced
1 red Thai chili
2 Tablespoons thyme, chopped
½ cup Minus 8 ice wine vinegar
3 ounces red wine vinegar
2 ounces extra virgin olive oil
Salt and white pepper

Passion Fruit Gelée:

16 sheets gelatin
1 kilogram passion fruit purée


Horseradish, cleaned, peeled and grated, to taste
Micro arugula

For the Beets:

Preheat oven to 350ºF. Scrub beets and place each variety in a different pan. Mix thyme, sage, vinegar, olive oil, water, salt and pepper. Pour one third of the mixture over each kind of beet. Roast the beets for 35 – 45 minutes. Allow the beets to cool, then peel and quarter them keeping them separate.

For the Mignonette:

Combine the shallots, chili, thyme and vinegars. Marinate for 30 minutes. Add the olive oil, salt and pepper. Reserve at room temperature until ready to plate.

For the Passion Fruit Gelée:

Bloom the gelatin sheets in ice water. Bring the passion fruit purée to a boil and whisk in the gelatin. Pour it in a half sheet pan and chill in the refrigerator until completely set. Once set, finely dice and reserve in the refrigerator.

To Assemble and Serve:

Divide the beets evenly among 4 plates, such that each plate has 24 beet pieces, 8 of each color. Drizzle the mignonette around the plate and make three small piles of passion gelée. Garnish with the horseradish and micro arugula.

Warm Tri Beet Salad with Hand-Torn Croutons


1 washed small bunch each: red, golden, candy striped, greens removed*
3 cups greens from beets, washed, stems removed, and roughly chopped
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
Extra virgin olive oil (EVOO), as needed
6 stems fresh thyme
Fresh Italian flat-leaf parsley
1/3 cup water
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
1 cup mandarins, peeled, white pith removed with knife
1 teaspoon lemon juice
2 tablespoons shallot, diced small
Small loaf bread, crust removed, torn into bite-sized pieces
* Any combination of beets will work, even if only one variety can be located.


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

In a roasting pan just large enough to accommodate the beets, add the beets, fresh thyme, 1 tablespoon kosher salt, water, and lastly drizzle over 3 tablespoons EVOO. Cover tightly with aluminum foil and roast in the oven for 30 minutes or until easily pierced with a knife.

Remove from the oven, carefully remove the foil, and set aside to cool. When the beets are cool enough to handle, using a hand cloth, wipe off the skins and discard them. Cut the beets into wedges, and separate them by color into three small bowls. Divide 2 tablespoons EVOO and 1 teaspoon lemon juice evenly between the bowls, and season with salt and pepper.

While the beets are roasting, spread the pieces of bread evenly on a baking sheet. Add a pinch of salt, a few good twists of pepper and drizzle over 1 tablespoons EVOO. Toast in the oven at 400 degrees F, checking them often, until lightly crisp and colored but not dry, approximately 15 minutes. Remove from the oven to cool.

In a large sauté pan over medium-high heat, add 2 tablespoons EVOO and heat until shimmering. Add the chopped beet greens all at once and toss to coat. Season with a good pinch of Kosher salt and a few good twists of pepper.

Add 1 tablespoon shallot and toss. Cook until the greens begin to wilt. Add the red wine vinegar and toss again. Cook until most of the liquid is evaporated, tossing periodically to prevent the greens from burning. Remove from the heat and set aside.

In a large bowl gently combine the greens, beets, lemon juice, 1/2 cup mandarins, with 3/4 cup parsley. Season with kosher salt and pepper then toss to combine, serve on a large plate, drizzle over 1 tablespoon EVOO, and place croutons randomly over top. Garnish with the remaining 1/2 cup of mandarins.

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