I’ll admit it–I’m not a huge beet fan.  I keep trying them, and keep not liking them.  I don’t hate them; I just think they’re a bit earthy and I’m not convinced trying another mode of preparation won’t do the trick.  So, my mission, should I choose to accept it (thus FORCING my husband to), is to try them another way!

Eat What:

-Sugar beets are important in the production of table sugar, as sucrose can be extracted from them

-The beet we all know and love is technically the ‘beetroot’ or ‘garden beet’ and is popular throughout Eastern Europe and is the main ingredient in borscht

-Other forms of beets that are popular include the pickled beet, red beet eggs (prepared by soaking hard-boiled eggs in the cooking liquid until they are bright red) and raw shredded beet in salad

-The Betanins in beets provide food coloring to many other products, including tomato paste, jams, jellies, ice cream and breakfast cereals

Eat When:

-Beets are season from June through October in most parts of North America

-Remove the greens (top parts) and store in the refrigerator for up to a week

-To prepare beets, use gloves and a stain-resistant cutting board to prevent the red juices from discoloring surfaces and clothes.  Either boil or roast beets with skin on, then peel once cooled.

Eat Right:

-One cup of beet slices is only 58 calories, although many of those come from sugar

-Beets are incredibly high in folate (37% of your RDA) and manganese (22%), as well as fiber, potassium and Vitamin C

-Beets are high in phytonutrients, which have antioxidant properties

Eat More:

-Use both the beets and their greens in this recipe!

-Simply slice and salt, or pickle them and store in the fridge

-Really hate beets?  I dare you to try these five recipes and see what you think!

Roasted Beets with Balsamic Glaze

Roasted Beets with Balsamic Glaze Recipe

I just found this one and think it might just be what I need to give these beautiful rubies another try!  I mean, what ISN’T better with a little balsamic glaze?

2 pounds red beets, medium sized, scrubbed clean, green tops removed (see beet greens recipe for what to do with beet greens)
Olive oil
Salt
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
2 teaspoons sugar
1 teaspoon grated orange zest
Freshly ground black pepper

1 Preheat oven to 400°F. Line a roasting pan with aluminum foil. Place the beets in the pan. Rub olive oil over the beets, and sprinkle with salt. Cover the beets with another sheet of aluminum foil. Roast for 1 to 2 hours, depending on the size of the beets and how old they are. After 1 hour, test every fifteen minutes by poking a beet with the tines of a fork. Once the fork tines go in easily, the beets are tender and cooked. Remove from the oven.

roasted-beets-balsamic-1.jpgroasted-beets-balsamic-2.jpg
roasted-beets-balsamic-3.jpgroasted-beets-balsamic-4.jpg

2 While the beets are cooling, prepare the balsamic glaze. In a small, shallow sauté pan, add the balsamic vinegar and sugar. Heat on high until the vinegar has reduced to a syrup consistency. Remove from heat.

3 After the beets have cooled for several minutes, but are still warm to the touch, peel off the outer skins and discard. Cut the beets into quarters or more, bite-sized pieces.

4 Place beets in a serving bowl. Pour balsamic glaze over the beets. Stir in grated orange zest, and add salt and pepper to taste.

Garnish with a little orange zest to serve.

Yield: Serves 6 to 8.

———————————————————————————–

Holly R. Layer received a B. A. in Journalism from Penn State and served four years in the U. S. Air Force before deciding to go back to school to become a Registered Dietician.  She loves running, reading, fine stationery, colorful kitchen gadgets and ALL things food-related.  An avid cook and baker, you can find her in the kitchen most days whipping up something yummy.  Too bad her husband, Andrew (an East Aurora native) is the pickiest man alive!  You can find her at www.thefrozenpineapple.com.