I'm not going to win any prizes for originality with this salad: it's something we've all seen before. But, if you take care with your ingredients and select good quality cheese and nuts - it'll be delicious, satisfying and beautiful. I use Stilton in this recipe, but feel free to substitute another soft cheese of your choice (think goat, farmers', feta, etc.). I roast my beets, but peel and cut them into their final shape before roasting: it speeds up the roasted process and there's no burned fingers to nurse later. —Savorykitchen
Roast the beets: Peel the beets with a vegetable peeler and slice into 1/4" slices. Lay the beets in a roasting pan and add 2 tablespoons of water and a sprinkle of salt. Cover the pan with foil and roast in a 350-degree oven for 20-30 minutes, until tender. Let the beet slices cool.
Slice the fennel into thin strips. Reserve the green frondy bits for garnish.
Shake the oil and vinegar together with a pinch of salt and a grind or two of pepper.
Layer the beets and fennel onto a platter. Sprinkle the cheese and walnuts over the top. Drizzle with the vinaigrette and sprinkle the fennel fronds over the top.