Jul
04
    
Posted (Lori) in News

Some of us are not used to eating them, but once we get over the mess of preparing them, beets become favorites. But the mess is undeniable; though I know people who eat them unpeeled, I find the peel unappealing. Getting the peel off the beet means getting beet juice on everything. And it stains. (Getting out beet stains: https://www.thespruce.com/remove-beet-stains-clothes-carpet-upholstery-2147049

The easiest way to cook beets is to cut off the tops and bottoms, wrap them loosely in foil—I wrap a bunch, some people say it’s better to do each beet separately—and roast them in the oven (375-400 degrees). If they’re very big, cut them into halves or quarters. I find that they are sometimes done (soft when you poke them) in as little as 30 minutes, but sometimes take up to 90 minutes. I just keep checking them; the only constant I find is that if I am in a hurry and need them to be done fast, they take longer. Once they’re soft, the skins peel off easily.

Other ways of cooking: peel and boil them; peel and steam them; slice and broil them.

They can also be microwaved; there are detailed instructions here: http://www.healthy-beets.com/fresh-beets.html

And beets are delicious raw—crunchy and tasty. I wouldn’t serve whole raw beets, but grated or slivered—or spiralized—they are excellent additions to salads and slaws. They’re too messy to use as crudités—pink fingers-–but thin slices of raw beet are great in sandwiches and salsas.

Some of my favorite recipes in Recipes from America’s Small Farmsinclude beets: Beet Burgers, p. 195 and Beet and Apple Slaw, p. 191.

RAW BEETS

There’s a selection of raw beet recipes here:
https://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/16/raw-beet-recipes_n_1676238.html

APPLE AND RAW BEET SLAW

Recipe from Kathleen Daelemans, The Food Network

Tip: Cut beets and apples into thin slices; stack the slices directly on top of one another and cut them into matchstick-size strips

Total Time: 20 min 6 servings

Ingredients

1 teaspoon grated ginger

1 pound beets, peeled

1 large Granny Smith apple, or similar flavored and textured apple

3 tablespoons sherry vinegar

1/2 teaspoon coarse grain salt

1/8 teaspoon cracked black pepper

1 to 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

Directions

In a medium sized salad bowl, using your microplane grater (or the smallest holes of a cheese grater) grate fresh ginger directly into bowl, about one teaspoon. Grate beets and apples, add them to the bowl with the ginger, and toss until ginger is evenly distributed. Add sherry vinegar, salt, and pepper to bowl and toss to coat evenly. Add olive oil, stir to combine. Taste and adjust seasonings. Serve immediately or keep refrigerated

From Mark Bittman

Raw Beet Salad and variations

4 servings, 20 minutes

1 to 11/2 pounds beets, preferably small

2 large shallots

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

2 teaspoons Dijon mustard, or to taste

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

2 tablespoons sherry or other good strong vinegar

1 sprig fresh tarragon, minced, if available

1/4 cup chopped parsley leaves

Peel the beets and shallots. Combine them in a food processor and pulse carefully until the beets are shredded; do not purée. (Or grate the beets by hand and mince the shallots, then combine.) Scrape into a bowl.

Toss with the salt, pepper, mustard, oil and vinegar. Taste and adjust the seasoning. Toss in the herbs and serve.

Raw Beet Salad with Cabbage and Orange. Quite nice-looking: Use equal parts beet and cabbage, about 8 ounces of each. Shred the beets (with the shallot) as directed; shred the cabbage by hand or by using the slicing disk of the food processor. Add 1 navel orange (including its juice), peeled and roughly chopped.

Raw Beet Salad with Carrot and Ginger. Ginger and beets are killer together: Use equal parts beet and carrot, about 8 ounces of each. Treat the carrots as you do the beets (you can process them together), adding about a tablespoon of minced peeled ginger to the mix; omit the tarragon. Substitute peanut for olive oil, lime juice for sherry vinegar, and cilantro for parsley.

Raw Beet Salad with Yogurt Dressing. Creamy: Replace the olive oil and one of the tablespoons of vinegar with 2 tablespoons plain yogurt, preferably whole-milk or low-fat.

COOKED BEET RECIPES

MARINATED BEET SALAD WITH WHIPPED GOAT CHEESE

JULIA MOSKIN, New York Times, 4 to 6 servings

It’s easy to make a pretty good beet salad, but this one makes the leap into greatness. After decades of kitchen experiments, the chef and beet maven Andrew Carmellini shared how to elevate both elements: marinate the beets, then season and whip the goat cheese. Feel free to cook the beets on a grill instead of in the oven if you’ve got a fire going. Young beets, juicy and tender enough to bite into, can be used instead of the thick-skinned, mature kind. But do not roast: Steam them just until tender.

FOR THE BEETS:

8 to 10 medium-large beets (see note)

2 tablespoons minced shallots

3 tablespoons olive oil, plus more to taste

2 tablespoons rich, sweet vinegar like Barolo, balsamic or sherry

Salt and ground black pepper

¼ cup shelled nuts, like pistachios, walnuts or pecans (optional)

1 cup loosely packed whole herb leaves (like parsley, mint or cilantro) or 2 cups small salad greens (like baby spinach, baby arugula or mâche), or use a mixture or herbs and greens

FOR THE GOAT CHEESE:

¼ cup fresh goat cheese (4 ounces)

1 tablespoon olive oil

2 tablespoons whole milk or heavy cream

½ teaspoon rice or white wine vinegar, plus more to taste

½ teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper

¼ teaspoon salt, more to taste

PREPARATION

Prepare the beets: Place a rack in the center of the oven and heat to 400 degrees. Place a sheet pan underneath to catch any drips from the beets.

Trim the greens, tops and stems from the beets. Wash thoroughly and wrap in aluminum foil packages, about 4 beets per package. Place the packages directly on the oven rack and bake until beets are easily pierced by a fork or knife, 45 minutes to 1 hour depending on size. (No need to unwrap the beets to test them.)

Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine shallots, oil, vinegar and a lavish sprinkling of salt and pepper. Set aside.

Remove beets from oven and carefully open packages to let the steam escape. Let cool at least 20 minutes, or up to 4 hours.

Unwrap beets and use a peeler or your fingers to remove any tough skin. Dice beets neatly into bite-size pieces. Add to bowl with shallot mixture, mix well and let marinate in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes or up to 8 hours. Stir occasionally.

Meanwhile, in a toaster oven or 350-degree oven, toast nuts until golden, about 5 minutes. If unsalted, sprinkle with salt. Let cool, then coarsely chop.

Prepare the goat cheese: In a bowl, mix or whisk all ingredients together until smooth. Keep whipping until cheese is fluffy and soft. Taste and season with additional vinegar and salt. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

To serve, pile beets on a serving platter or individual plates. Spoon remaining dressing over the top. Spoon dollops of goat cheese mixture on and around the beets, then tuck in herbs and/or greens. Sprinkle with nuts and serve immediately.

BEET BOURGUIGNON

From: http://www.greenkitchenstories.com/beet-bourguignon/

Serves at least 4 persons

This is one of those dishes that is better when made a day in a advance. The flavors will become more intense and the vegetables more tender.

2 tbsp olive oil

1 yellow onion, chopped

4 cloves garlic, minced

8 small beets, peeled & quartered (we used Chioggia beets)

4 medium sized carrots, sliced in large pieces?2 sprigs thyme

sea salt & pepper to taste

2 tbsp tomato paste

1 cup red wine

2 cups vegetable stock

3 bay leaves

2 tsp arrowroot powder, solved in 2 tbsp water (optional)

2 cups lentils, for serving

4 cups water

a pinch of sea salt

2 tbsp olive oil

2-3 portobello mushrooms

10 champignon mushroom

10 small pearl onions, peeled

Cooking the stew: Heat the olive oil in a dutch oven or a large cast iron pot over medium heat. Stir in onions and garlic, sauté until soft. Toss beets, carrots, thyme and salt and pepper into the pan, cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in the tomato paste, red wine, vegetable stock and bay leaves, let simmer on low heat for 40 minutes. Meanwhile prepare the lentils, mushrooms and pearl onions.

Preparing the lentils: Rinse lentils under running water. Bring water to a boil, add lentils and lower to medium heat. Let simmer for 15 to 20 minutes, when almost done add salt. Set aside.

Searing the mushrooms and pearl onion: Heat olive oil in a pan. Lower the heat and sear the portobello, champignon mushrooms and pearl onions, stirring occasionally, until tender and golden in color. Season to taste. Set aside.

Finishing the stew: Taste the stew, add more wine, stock or herbs if you like. If you prefer the stew a little thicker, add arrowroot mixture, but this is optional. Add mushrooms and onions and simmer for 10 more minutes. To serve, spoon the stew over a plate of lentils and sprinkle with fresh thyme.

FRENCH PEASANT BEETS

FROM FOOD52.com, Amy N.B.

Author Notes: Between our CSA and garden, we found ourselves up to our eyeballs in beets a few summers ago. I concocted this dish as an homage to a simple French peasant dinner. When I explained the concept to my husband, he riduculed me, “What peasants eat boucheron and drink Muscadet with their beets?” “Um, French ones?”

Serves 2 for dinner, 4 as a side

4-6 Beets with greens (I like a mixture of golden and red beets)

1 bunch Swiss chard

3 tablespoons butter

1 shallot

Salt

Freshly Ground Pepper

2 tablespoons white wine (Muscadet is my preference)

2 tablespoons water

.5 pounds Bucheron Cheese (room temperature)

Crusty peasant style bread (warmed in oven)

Scrub and peel the beets. Remove the greens and chop coarsely. Set the greens aside in a large prep bowl. Slice beets into 1/4 inch rounds.

Remove the ribs from the swiss chard and coarsely chop and toss into bowl with the beet greens.

In a large sautee pan, melt butter. Sautee shallots.

Add beet rounds to the shallot butter mixture. Crack some pepper over the beets and a toss on a pinch of salt. Reduce heat and sautee beets, turning over to ensure even cooking.

Scoop greens and beets into a low shallow bowl. Garnish with a sizeable wedge of bucheron and some crusty bread. Crack a little bit of pepper over the entire dish.

HONEY GINGER BALSAMIC GLAZED BEETS(The Kitchn)

Serves 4-6 as a side dish or 2-4 as a luncheon salad

1 pound medium-sized beets, trimmed and scrubbed (about 6)

2 tablespoons butter

2 tablespoons peeled and chopped ginger

2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

1 tablespoon honey (optional)

basil leaves for garnish

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Place beets in an oven-proof pan with sides, such as a cake pan. Splash in about 1/4 cup of water and seal the top with aluminum foil. Place in oven and roast until tender, about 45 minutes. Test by piercing a beet with a sharp knife — it should glide right in.

Remove beets from oven and allow to cool a few minutes, just enough to handle them comfortably. Peel beets using a sharp paring knife, or have a little fun and just slip the skins off using your hands. (A very sensual kitchen experience!) Cold beets won’t peel easily, so be sure to do this while the beets are still warm. Slice beets into chunks. At this point you have the option of refrigerating the beets until you are ready to use them.

Heat the butter over medium heat in a large frying pan and add the ginger. Cook the ginger for a minute or two, just until it becomes fragrant. Add the beets and the balsamic and stir. When the beets are hot and glazed, test for sweetness. Add honey if needed and cook a little longer to glaze. Hint: Adding honey and upping the sweetness of this dish is a good way to introduce beets to the haters.

Remove from heat and serve hot. Alternatively, these beets are also really good served at room temperature as a salad.

BEETS WITH HORSERADISH CREME FRAICHE

From Christian Shaffer. Los Angeles Times

About 1 pound of beets, quartered if large

1 tablespoons seasoned rice vinegar (or balsamic)

3 tbs good-quality olive oil

1/4 teaspoon toasted ground coriander seeds

1 small shallot, minced

1/2 cup creme fraiche—see note below on how to make creme fraiche

1 tablespoons prepared horseradish

1 tablespoons kosher salt, divided

1/8 teaspoon black pepper

1 tablespoons fresh chervil or parsley, whole leaves or rough chopped (summer savory is a good substitute)

1. Boil the beets in enough water to cover, with 1 tablespoon salt, until tender, about an hour.

2. In a small bowl, combine the vinegar, oil, coriander and shallot and set the mixture aside for 30 minutes. In another bowl, combine the creme fraiche, horseradish, one-quarter teaspoon salt and pepper and set aside.

3. Drain the beets and, while still warm, peel them. Slice them into wedges, about 8 to 10 per beet, and cool.

4. Pour the vinegar mixture over the beets and let stand, covered, at room temperature for an hour. Spoon the horseradish cream onto a platter, covering the bottom. Using a slotted spoon, mound the beets over the cream. Garnish the beets with the chervil and serve.

Note: CREME FRAICHE is a lot like sour cream, but better. You can buy it in cartons, but it’s pricey; it’s easy to make and I think the homemade version is better.

Instructions from Epicurious: Combine 1 cup whipping cream and 2 tablespoons buttermilk in a glass container. Cover and let stand at room temperature (about 70°F) from 8 to 24 hours, or until very thick. Stir well before covering and refrigerate up to 10 days.

I know—leaving the cream outside the refrigerator for 8 to 24 hours sounds wrong. But it doesn’t go bad, it gets better.

WARM BEETS AND GREENS(adapted from EATING WELL)

8 cups greens (chard, kale, collard, mizuna, spinach, etc.) torn into pieces or sliced into ribbons

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

1 cup thinly sliced onion

2 plum tomatoes, chopped

2 tablespoons sliced Kalamata olives

2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

1 clove garlic, minced

2 cups steamed beet wedges, or slices, 1/2-1 inch thick

2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

Place greens in a large bowl.

Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add onion and cook, stirring, until starting to soften, about 2 minutes. Add tomatoes, olives, parsley and garlic and cook, stirring, until the tomatoes begin to break down, about 3 minutes. Add beets, vinegar, salt and pepper and cook, stirring, until the beets are heated through, about 1 minute more. Add the greens to the beet mixture toss over low heat until combined and greens wilt sightly. Serve warm.

ROASTED BEET, PEACH, and GOAT CHEESE SALAD(Allrecipes)

2 beets, scrubbed

1 bunch arugula, rinsed and dried; or a mixture of mesclun

2 fresh peaches – peeled, pitted, and sliced

2 shallots or one small sweet onion, chopped

1/4 cup pistachio nuts or toasted almonds, chopped

1 (4 ounce) package goat cheese, crumbled

1/4 cup walnut oil

2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Wrap beets in foil, and place onto a baking sheet. Bake in the preheated oven until the beets are tender. Allow the beets to cool slightly, then remove the skins. Let the beets cool to room temperature, or refrigerate until cold. Once cooled, thinly slice the beets.

Place the greens into a large mixing bowl. Add the sliced beets and peaches; sprinkle with the onions, nuts, and goat cheese. In a separate bowl, whisk together the walnut oil, balsamic vinegar, salt, and pepper until emulsified, and pour over the salad mixture. Toss well, and serve.

SPICY BEET, ONION, and WALNUT SALAD

Adapted from Jerusalemcookbook—and simplified.

About 1 cup cooked beets, cut into wedges

About 2 cups salad greens—arugula, lettuce, mache, frisee, watercress, etc.

1 small onion or leek, sliced into rings and lightly sauted

2 tablespoons of your favorite herbs—basil, parsley, cilantro, summer savory

Dressing:

1 cup chopped walnuts, toasted (or other nuts)

2 tablespoons crushed garlic or garlicscape

¼ tsp crushed red pepper flakes (more or less to taste)

¼ cup cider vinegar

3 tbs. oil—if you have walnut oil, mix 1 tbs walnut oil with 2 tbs olive oil.

Toss the beets, greens, onions/leeks, and herbs. Mix the dressing ingredients and pour over the salad.



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