Roasted and Marinated Beets with Burrata, Charred Kale, and Hazelnut Vinaigrette

"This is a really, really exceptional dish that always blows people’s minds. It speaks exactly to that incredible thing that happens after you’ve marinated root vegetables and then charred them, and this time we’re adding some Tuscan kale to the marinade and charring it in the cast- iron skillet along with the roots. Then, because I’m a nut- vinaigrette freak, everything gets tossed in a hazelnut vinaigrette. Nut oils have that same combination of earthy and sweet as root vegetables, which makes them the dream team, and then the oil has all that extra fat and richness that’s just delicious. I top this off with burrata, which might seem like a cop-out because adding burrata to things is like adding caviar— it’s cheating a little bit— but the creaminess against the roasted veg is just out of this world. And it doesn’t necessarily need the ooze factor, so you could use fresh mozzarella instead. Could you just add the cheese to the roasted roots along with some marinated kale? Yeah. Would it be unique? Yeah. But the whole extra step of searing the beets and kale and pouring them right from the pan onto a platter? Next level.If you’ve already roasted and marinated the beets, you could marinate the kale on its own, then sear everything together."
-- @paulkahan

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Beets, burrata and kale come together in this satisfying dinner salad, perfect for a weeknight or dinner party.

This recipe is republished from Cooking For Good Times by Paul Kahan, with permission from Lorena Jones Book (2019).

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  • Recipe Card
Prep time 10mins
Cook time 5mins
Serves or Makes: 6

Recipe Card

For the Marinated Kale


  • 1/4 cup Pecorino cheese, or parmigiano cheese, grated
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 lemon, zested and juiced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • Black peppercorns, freshly ground
  • 1 large bunch Tuscan kale, ribs removed, coarsely chopped

For the Hazelnut Vinaigrette


  • 1/4 heaping cup hazelnuts, toasted in a skillet over medium heat until fragrant and then finely ground
  • 3 tablespoons hazelnut oil
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon finely chopped shallot
  • 1 teaspoon minced thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon honey
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3 cranks black pepper

For the Salad


  • 2 pounds red beets, roasted and cubed
  • 2 balls burrata, or fresh mozzarella cheese, torn into rough chunks
  • Kosher salt
  • Black peppercorns, freshly ground
  • 1/2 cup coarsely chopped toasted hazelnuts


  • Step 1

    To marinate the kale: In a large bowl, combine the cheese, olive oil, lemon zest and juice, garlic, honey, salt, chile flakes, and pepper. Add the kale and toss to combine— really get in there and work the kale with your hands; this isn’t a gentle massage. Set the kale aside to marinate at room temperature for 2 hours or in the fridge overnight. Alternatively, you could toss the kale in with the just- roasted, marinating beets along with the cheese, olive oil, et al., and let the mixture sit at room temperature for 2 hours or in the fridge overnight. They’ll marinate just the same.

  • Step 2

    To make the vinaigrette: Combine the hazelnuts, hazelnut oil, vinegar, shallot, thyme, honey, salt, and pepper in a small jar with a tight- fitting lid and shake it until the dressing comes together. Set aside until ready to serve, or store in the fridge for up to 5 days.

  • Step 3

    To char the kale and beets: Preheat a large cast- iron pan over high heat for 5 minutes. When the pan looks very hot (you see little wisps of smoke), add the marinated beets and char on one side for 1 minute, just long enough to get some char. Remove the beets from the pan and add the kale, again charring for 1 minute. You are looking to just heat the kale, not fully cook it. You also could do this over the high heat of a grill. Remove the pan from the heat.

  • Step 4

    To assemble and serve: Spread the cheese over a large platter. Season it a bit with salt and pepper. Scatter the charred kale and beets over the cheese, douse with the hazelnut vinaigrette, and finish with the chopped hazelnuts.