2 pounds small beets (red, mixed variety, or mixed color) with their greens attached
1½ Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
¼ teaspoon kosher salt
½ cup Aioli *recipe below
Remove the beet greens and wash thoroughly. Set aside. Scrub the beets in a sinkful of cold water; use the vegetable brush. Rinse the beets and arrange them in a single layer in a shallow hotel pan—you want them wet from the washing. The few drops of water will help during the roasting; this is not a dry roast. Don’t use a sheet pan; we’ve noticed that the beets get dry and hard and don’t peel well when they are spread out too far away from each other.
Season the beets with a gentle glug of olive oil and sprinkle with the salt. Cover tightly with foil, shiny side out.
Roast in 400° oven for 1 hour but check at 40 minutes, by inserting skewer, cake tester, or thin blade of your knife tip to see if they are tender. Remove from oven, remove foil, and allow to cool enough to handle.
Wear gloves and slip the skins off of the beets. Leave the long tails when possible. If the skins are not slipping off easily, they may be undercooked. Rewrap them and continue to cook until perfectly done—don’t try to forge ahead with a product you know is not properly done.
If you have mixed color beets, take care to store them separately when you are peeling as the red are powerful stainers and they obliterate the gorgeous paler hues of the cioggia, yellow, or candy cane beets when you throw them all together—you just end up with universal crimson. On the other hand, you can sometimes add a red beet to a tray of yellow to create gorgeous color.
1/2 cup slivered almonds*
1/2 to 1 garlic clove
1 tablespoon dijon mustard
salt and pepper
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons water
Add all ingredients except for the water to a blender or food processor and process for 30 seconds to 1 minute until smooth-ish.
Gradually add the water until the desired creaminess and smooth consistency is achieved.
Serve immediately or refrigerate until needed. Enjoy!