Sunday, December 4, 2011

Garden to table: Roasted beets

Last week I cooked the beet greens, today I cooked the beets themselves. I like beets prepared in any manner. Pickled, thinly sliced raw in a salad, and roasted. My husband only likes them roasted, so that's how I made them this time.

This is right after they came out of the ground last week, and had the tops removed and a rinse-off with the water hose. I let them dry and then stored them in the refrigerator in a plastic storage bag:

I further cleaned them, by scrubbing in the sink with a vegetable brush, then peeling the thick outer skin off and trimming away the root end and the base of the greens up top. Then cut them into halves and quarters, depending on the size of the beet.  The pink and white striped beets are a variety called "Chiogga", the solid ones are just common beets, and there are a very few pieces of yellow golden beets as well:

After they were peeled and sliced, I tossed them with a little bit of olive oil, some ground white pepper, a little bit of salt, and a little bit of onion powder. And then spread them out in a single layer in a pan. I baked them at 400 for 20 minutes, then gave them a good stir, spread them back out across the pan, and baked them for another 20 minutes:

Roasting the beets gave them a very mild and sweet flavor, you want to cook them until they are fork tender, but not overcooked. No need for a sauce, the olive oil and bit of onion powder makes into a bit of a glaze while they cook.  They really don't need any seasoning when they're this young and fresh, but the tiny bit of onion powder really works well with the sweetness of the beets.

That's it for the beets from my garden, I will for certain be planting them again. I think that Fall is the only good season to grow them here, but I will try some in late Winter just to see if they do anything or not.

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