• Updated Website Address: LocalBanquet.org
  • Looking Back on a Decade of Maple Innovation
  • Listening to Farmers’ Voices in the Ecosystem Services Discussion
  • Updated Website Address: LocalBanquet.org

    We've changed our website. Please update your bookmarks to LocalBanquet.org LocalBanquet.org is where you will now find the latest Local Banquet stories, a new Story of the Day update feature, features from the archives, and information on how to contribute to Local Banquet if you're interested in writing about Vermont agriculture. 

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  • Looking Back on a Decade of Maple Innovation

    Back in 2007, Local Baquet ran an article by Bonnie Hudspeth on maple innovation and production in Vermont. Since then, maple production in Vermont has tripled to 1.8 million gallons a year and innovation seems to have entered a new golden (or perhaps amber) age. We did a quick maple innovation news round up for 2018 / 2019 to help everyone keep up with the some of the trends. 

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  • Listening to Farmers’ Voices in the Ecosystem Services Discussion

    In 2015, the USDA funded a project for UVM researchers to engage in discussions with Vermont farmers about the idea of being paid for ecosystem services. Ecosystem services are things farmers do that improve the environment for everyone, a common example is grass-based farms capturing carbon in the soil as a way to combat climate change. Some services happen naturally through sustainable farming, others take more of an incentive to implement, and either way some policy makers believe that farmers shoudl be compensated for their contribution. 

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Roasted Beets with Walnuts, Pear, and Endive

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  • Ready in: 30 minutes prep
  • Serves: 6
  • Complexity: very easy
Roasted Beets with Walnuts, Pear, and Endive

Adapted from Alice Waters’ Chez Panisse Vegetables, Harper Collins Publishers, 1996.


  • 2 lbs. Red and Golden beets
  • 3 medium Bosc pears
  • ½ cup of shelled walnuts
  • 2 Tbs. of red wine vinegar
  • 2 Tbs. of orange juice
  • ¼ cup of olive oil
  • salt and fresh ground pepper
  • ¼ lb. Belgian endive


Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Trim and wash the beets, leaving the skin on. Place them on a baking sheet, tightly covered, with a little water. Roast them for 45 minutes, or until fork-tender. Cut the pears into pretty slices. Put the walnuts and pears on a baking sheet and toast them in the oven for about 5 minutes.

Make a vinaigrette by mixing the vinegar, orange juice, and olive oil. Season with salt and fresh pepper. When the beets are cool enough to be handled, peel them and slice them into little rounds. Toss them gently with the vinaigrette and arrange them on a plate with the Belgian endive and toasted pear slices. Drizzle any vinaigrette remaining in the bowl and garnish with the toasted walnuts.

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Our stories, interviews, and essays reveal how Vermont residents are building their local food systems, how farmers are faring in a time of great opportunity and challenge, and how Vermont’s agricultural landscape ties into larger questions of sustainability and the future of our food supply.