Friday, June 18, 2010

We Got Beets!

First, Prepare the beets:

- Remove the beet from the greens.
- Slice off the tops and tips.
- Spray with oil.
- Wrap in tin foil.
- Bake about 25-30 minutes at 350 degrees.

TIP - The beets are easier to peel after their baked.

TIP - Feel free to add garlic cloves, onion chunks, etc. to bake with beets.

While the beets are baking, wash the greens and cut the stems off - these are edible, don't throw them away! If you take a bite of a stem you'll notice they're tough and bitter. Here's the trick:

- Boil about two cups of water in a small saucepan.
- Add a tablespoon or two of salt (don't worry, you're not going to eat this much salt).
- Cut the stems into 1 inch lengths and add to boiling water.
- Boil for approximately 5 minutes (about the time it takes to coarsely chop the greens).
- Strain the salt water off and thoroughly rinse with cold water.

Take a bite now, and you'll notice that the stems are soft and not bitter at all!

In a saucepan on medium heat, saute the stems with just a just a splash (no more than a teaspoon or so) of each: red wine vinegar, soy sauce, and sesame oil.

After a few minutes, add the greens to the stems, cover, and remove from heat. You may wish to blanch the greens first (submerse in boiling water for 30 seconds then run under cold water) to prevent them from cooking down too much and to help preserve their color, but I usually skip that step.

After the beets are done baking (and have cooled a little), remove the skins, slice them, and toss them with the greens. Taste it to see if it needs any more soy sauce or vinegar.

The greens are the best part, in my opinion, and taste great by themselves. If I notice the greens going limp in the fridge, and I don't plan on cooking the beets yet, I'll cook just the greens and leave the beets for later.

I also use this method for preparing turnip greens.

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