The City Magazine Since 1975

Roasted Beets With Watermelon, Feta, Arugula, & Black Olive Oil

August 2020
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2 bunches red beets, washed and tops removed
2 Tbs. olive oil
1/2 Tbs. kosher salt
1 tsp. ground fennel seed
1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
Peel of 1 lemon, in strips—do not zest and no white pith
2 sprigs rosemary
1 small cannonball watermelon, seeds removed and cut into cubes
2-3 oz. feta cheese
6 oz. arugula, washed and spun
2 Tbs. fresh lemon juice
2 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
1 tsp. kosher salt
1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
Black olive oil 

For the black olive oil:

1 cup cured black olives such as Kalamata, pits removed
3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil


For the black olive oil:

Place the olives and olive oil in a blender and purée until mixture reaches the consistency of a smooth oil, about five minutes.

Preheat oven to 350°F.

Mix beets with olive oil, salt, fennel, and red pepper flakes. Place on a double layer of heavy-duty aluminum foil, top with lemon peel strips and rosemary sprigs, and tightly wrap. Place the package on a baking sheet with sides. Roast for two hours or until beets are tender.

Cool beets to the point you can handle them but peel while they are still hot. Cut beets into quarters.

Combine watermelon, feta, and arugula in a large mixing bowl. Toss with the lemon juice, olive oil, salt, and pepper. Coat the bottom of a large platter with black olive oil. Layer with the roasted beets. Top with the arugula mixture and serve.