Shad Roe with Beets, Bacon, and Balsamic


Shad roe, with its rich, nutty flavor, is an exquisite spring dish. This appetizer recipe is from chef Bill Taibe of LeFarm in Westport, Connecticut.Also try:Whipped Chicken Livers with Shallot Jam


  • 4 medium red beets

  • 4 medium golden beets

  • 1 fennel bulb, sliced

  • 2 cloves garlic

  • 1 apple, quartered

  • 6 sprigs fresh thyme

  • 2 fresh bay leaves

  • Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper

  • ½ cup plus 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

  • ½ cup all-purpose flour

  • 4 pieces shad roe

  • 8 slices thick-cut applewood smoked bacon

  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter

  • Sea salt, for serving

  • ¼ cup assorted coarsely chopped herbs, such as parsley, tarragon, and chives

  • 1 cup frisee

  • ¼ cup balsamic vinegar


  1. Place each variety of beet in a separate saucepan; divide fennel slices, garlic, apple pieces, 4 sprigs of thyme, bay leaves, and 2 tablespoons salt evenly between saucepans. Add enough water to each saucepan to cover contents by 4 inches. Place each saucepan over high heat and bring to a boil; immediately reduce heat to a simmer and cook until beets are easily pierced with the tip of a knife, 25 to 35 minutes. Drain and discard all contents except for beets.

  2. Peel and quarter beets. Transfer each variety to its own bowl. Toss each with 2 tablespoons olive oil and season with salt and pepper; set aside.

  3. Place flour in a shallow dish and season with salt. Add shad roe and gently toss to coat, shaking off excess. Transfer to a plate and set aside.

  4. Place bacon slices in a large nonstick skillet and cook over medium heat until bacon is crisp and fat has been rendered. Remove bacon from skillet and set aside. Remove all but 3 tablespoons bacon fat and discard. Add 3 tablespoons olive oil, shad roe, and remaining 2 sprigs thyme to skillet. Cook for 1 minute and turn; add butter and continue cooking until shad roe reaches an internal temperature of 135 degrees on an instant read thermometer, 1 to 2 minutes more. Remove from heat and set aside.

  5. To serve, divide beets, bacon, and frisee evenly between 4 plates. Place shad roe on each plate and sprinkle with sea salt and chopped herbs. Drizzle with remaining 1/4 cup olive oil and balsamic vinegar before serving.

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