11.18.2009

Cooking with Beets

Want to try cooking with beets but you aren’t quite sure where to start? Fear not, cooking with beets is simple and easy with the only set back being that your hands or dishtowel might turn red. Beets are a bright, tasty vegetable to include in any healthy diet. Said to reduce blood pressure, beets provide high fiber and are a good source of Vitamin C, Magnesium, and Iron. Incorporating new vegetables in your home cooking can expose your family to something they may have never known they liked. This beautiful deep red, almost magenta, root vegetable is a vibrant alternative to the usual broccoli or carrot side dish.


The easiest way to prepare fresh beets is to roast them. After trimming off the greens and cleaning the beets well, toss the beets in a drizzle of Extra Virgin olive oil. Place the beets on a large pan, and roast in the oven at 375 degrees for 20-30 minutes or until the beets are fork tender. When the beets are ready, allow them to cool a bit before removing the skins. With a towel, rub the outside of the beets to peel off the skins, which should fall off quite easily. Your towel will turn a shade of red, so make sure it isn’t your best kitchen towel.


At this point, you can prepare the beets any way you like.
You can simply serve them with salt and pepper and call it a day. To turn the beets into something really special try adding a few or all of these elements. Cut the beets in half and then make fairly thin slices of the vegetable. Lightly toast a quarter cup of pine nuts in a pan. Toss the beets with the toasted pine nuts, a handful of crumbled feta cheese, baby spinach leaves, diced green onion, and torn basil leaves. Add a small drizzle of olive oil and balsamic vinegar, and salt and pepper to taste. Serve this nutritious, stunning side dish along side a sliced flank steak, grilled chicken or fish. Make a large batch, so you can have plenty of leftovers to serve with sandwiches or soups throughout the week. This will assure that your family is getting plenty of vegetables through the busy week. Try this recipe today, and bring something new to your dinner table.

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