In this combination, the almonds enhance the beets’ earthiness, and the bracing, creamy horseradish dressing offers not just richness but also a bit of a bite. Be sure not to discard the leafy greens from the beets; they are a wonderful vegetable in and of themselves. Chop beet greens and add to a soup, or slice and sauté them with garlic and chili as you would spinach or any leafy green. Waste not, want not, as they say!
Place the beets and the water in a baking dish or on a rimmed sheet pan. Roast the beets, turning occasionally, until they’re cooked through, about 45 minutes depending on their size. To test for doneness, insert a paring knife into the largest beet—it should be able to go through with barely any resistance.
Let the beets rest until they’re cool enough to handle. Trim off and discard the stem ends of the beets and carefully peel the beets. Cut the beets into bite-size wedges
and place them into a bowl. Add the vinaigrette and the almonds to the
bowl and stir to combine. At this point the beets can be stored for up to a week;
they only get better as they marinate in the dressing.
In a small bowl, whisk together the crème fraîche, horseradish, and vinegar and season the mixture with salt.
To serve, dollop the crème fraîche mixture onto the beets and drizzle with the olive oil.