salad with sous vide beets

Beet Saladwith Compressed Watercress, Caramelized Ruby Shallots, Goat Cheese, and Fried Pecans


Compression and sous vide make each ingredient sing in this elegant beet salad.


14 small beets or 3-4 medium beets, quartered
4 Tbsp olive oil
2 C canola oil (if fryer is not available)
Sea salt to taste
3 bunches watercress
4 Tbsp butter
8 oz shallots, chopped
2 Tbsp sherry vinegar
8 oz pecans, unblanched and unsalted
3 C granulated sugar
1 C water
4 oz goat cheese
Freshly ground black pepper
Micro herbs for garnish



  • Sous vide circulator
  • Sous vide pouches
  • Vacuum sealer
  • Multivac chamber vacuum machine
  • Medium sauté pan
  • Deep fryer or medium saucepan
  • Baking sheet
  • Salad spinner (optional)
  • Cooling rack


Prepping time: 35 minutes / Cooking time: 2 hours


4 servings


For the Beets:

  1. Preheat the water bath to 181.4°F (83°C).
  2. Wash the beets thoroughly and trim the tops. If using large beets, peel and quarter them.
  3. Toss the beets in the olive oil and season with sea salt.
  4. Place the beets in a sous vide bag and vacuum pack.
  5. Place in water bath and cook for 60-90 minutes.
  6. Remove bag of sous vide beets from water bath and transfer the pouch to a bowl filled with cool water.


For the Watercress:

  1. Wash the watercress to remove any dirt, and spin it dry with a salad spinner. Shake it very well to remove any excess moisture, and wrap with a wet paper towel followed by plastic wrap, which will keep the watercress fresh longer.
  2. Place the bowl in a Multivac chamber vacuum machine and run on the General setting for one cycle.
  3. Drain and store in resealable bag, then transfer to the fridge.

If using a salad spinner: Follow the directions as above for cleaning and spinning, and then place the watercress, roots intact (if possible) and submerged in a small bowl of ice water. Refrigerate overnight.

For the Shallots:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F.
  2. Peel the shallots.
  3. Heat butter in a medium sauté pan over medium-high heat.
  4. Add the shallots and sugar to the pan and toss to coat. Cook until shallots begin to caramelize, taking care not to burn them.
  5. Add the vinegar, and season with salt and pepper.
  6. Transfer pan to the oven and roast for 20-30 minutes until tender and caramelized. Set aside.


For the Pecans:

  1. Preheat deep fryer to 375°F (190.5°C). (If a fryer is not available, fill a medium saucepan with 2 cups of canola oil.)
  2. Fry the pecans, in batches if necessary to avoid crowding in the pot, for 2 minutes.
  3. Drain and rinse under cold water.
  4. Combine 1 cup of water and 3 cups of sugar and bring to simmer for 2 minutes.
  5. Add the pecans and continue to simmer for 5 minutes.
  6. Drain and transfer to a parchment-lined rimmed baking sheet and allow to air dry.
  7. Once they are dry, fry the pecans again in small batches for about 3 to 5 minutes.
  8. Transfer to the rimmed baking sheet set on top of a cooling rack.
  9. Repeat until all the pecans have been fried. Allow the pecans to cool completely.


For the Dish:

  1. Peel sous vide beets by using a rag or a paper towel (gloves are recommended).
  2. Arrange the watercress on a serving dish.
  3. Combine the beets with the shallots in a bowl.
  4. Arrange the beets and shallots on the plate with the watercress.
  5. Garnish with goat cheese, pecans, and micro herbs.

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