a triumphant beetroot

We eyed each other off. Me on one side, it laying boldly on top. My shoulders slump a little, my breath exhales slowly and I gingerly pick it up.

I can’t help but sigh. There we were again, looking eye to… well foliage, with the same old dilemma. What to do with you beetroot?

You see, beetroot and I were not friends. We never were. Sure, his trashy cousin from the can was fine. Actually rather enjoyable slapped on to a weekend burger, but it was this guy. The plump, rounded, red, rooted vegetable that kept cropping up in my vegetable box. Time and time again, there he was. When will this damn beetroot season end?

I had tried to like it, I really had. Steamed…ick. Pan fried…ick. Drowned in balsamic and goats cheese…ick. Chocolate cake…ok, that one was fine, but I didn’t want to be making that all the time. Nothing seemed to make those red bulbs tasty, the earthy taste of it just stuck to it. I didn’t like it as a kid and I didn’t like it as an adult.

So I gave them away. Happily dropped them off to a neighbour. Passed them on to a friend at school. No dilemma, no thought… here you go, they’re all yours! Big lovely red bunches of them.

Another week went by and it happened again. A top of the vegetable box, sitting proudly in all its rounded red glory, the plumpest, most delicious looking fat beets you had ever seen. (Yes, despite me thinking they tasted ick, I could still value their beauty.)

I sighed… come on, you can do this I whispered to myself… try again. So I instagrammed them, got a lovely lot of suggestions of what to do with them and then turned my oven on. Roasted was suggested, and roasted it was. I hadn’t tried that way yet, maybe, just maybe this was the way to make it slightly palatable.

And it was, it so was. That earthiness that I couldn’t shake before seemed to have disappeared. Leaving instead a sweetness (that rather surprisingly) was quite delicious.

Roasted Beetroot and Pistachio Dip

On a tray into the oven with your whole fat beets at about 180C, (they’re done when you can slip a knife in easily.)

the skin can easily be peeled off when you’ve done this-

chop in to rough pieces and add

a handful of roasted pistachio

salt and pepper to taste

blitz it all with a hand held mixer

and then stir though four heaped dessert spoonfuls of natural yogurt

******

We ate this with a little spelt sourdough, and also on top of pumpkin soup- which had some great colours.

For all those who already eat roasted beetroot and are thinking well, duh Brydie…of course that’s the best way! What can I say? Sometimes, things run a little slower round these parts.

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34 thoughts on “a triumphant beetroot

  1. I love beets. I can’t get enough of them. I pickle them, cook them, make slaw from them, grate them into minced beef, and I’ve even been known to eat them raw. And this recipe looks very interesting indeed! šŸ™‚

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  2. Oh, thank you for writing this. I do have always despised beets, but I find I can eat them if they’re grated into salad. I also don’t might borscht – it must have enough other flavors to keep me just tasting dirt when I bite into them. That dip sounds really promising. I may have to give it a whirl. Have you ever tried pickling them?

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  3. I love the flavour combinations in this dip! I don’t consider any other way than roasting beets to be fair to this deliscious vege. My parents grow their own and I take the young beet greens to use for stir-fries, salads or tossing with pancetta and a balsamic finish -just like young chard or silver beet. Hard to find growers and stores that will keep the greens, but they’re great too and shouldn’t be thrown away!

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  4. I love beetroot…love the savoury yellow ones, love the sweet red ones…yum! Luckily my daughter loves them too and we love grating it, mix through a little of our best balsamic, best olive oil, salt and topped with fetta. Sweet, salty, sour, nice! Roasted is an old fave too. The Sri Lankans make a beetroot curry – have you ever tried that? Strangely nice.

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  5. I only use beets in my juices. In Norway I ate pickled beets a lot (of course, in Scandinavia we pickle everything), especially on liver paste (yum). Other than that, I’m not really used to using beets. I tried roasting them in the oven. Ick.

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  6. Oh ’tis a shame for the non beetroot lover. I often wonder how this could happen…..now you are friends you’ll feel much better

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  7. I love harvard beets…look that one up…it’s sweet and sour…and it’s divine over cottage cheese…okay that’s the way my grandmother served them and when I was little I loved it for the color…now it’s for the taste.

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  8. I’ve been roasting beetroot for the last several years and I find it so difficult to even eat it’s ‘shabby’ canned cousin these days. There is nothing like roasted beetroot baked with garlic cloves, a little salt, oil and some water to help steam that skin right off. Once baked add some balsamic and more extra virgin olive oil and your insides will be gleaming with health. Don’t know if you’ve noticed, but because roasted beet is so intense with all the nutrients locked in, you may notice ‘pink wee’. Don’t be alarmed – it’s perfectly natural. Hope this isn’t too forward of me; but I wish someone had told me to expect this. I thought something was wrong. Happy beeting!

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    • Too late Mariana, several months ago I was deeply alarmed for a good ten minutes. I was clearly very unwell!!! Then logical me kicked in and I remembered the very average beetroot dish I tried to make palatable the night before. Cool…pink wee!

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      • Hahaha – nice to know I wasn’t the only one ‘alarmed’. Just dropped back to tell you I had a bunch of beets taking up valuable space in the crisper. Your post inspired me to clean them up and bake them. Happy to report I’ve had two portions of roasted beetroot today and feeling all the better for it. Thanks!!

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  9. I am a lover of beetroot and grow it all the time. I mostly pickle it to use through out the year but will also bake to eat hot or slice into a salad. It is great to see you have come around to the humble yet gorgeous beetroot.

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  10. We love them here! Specially in a dip with toasted walnuts, very close to your pistachios but a little easier on the pocket. I love beetroot soup with a swirl of sour cream, beetroot and onion salad with dill and tarragon… I could go on. And there is a sourdough bread with beetroot in it in ‘How to Make Bread’ that some blog friends of mine revel in… Go on release your inner beet some more xx

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  11. If you’re brave you can also try a raw beetroot salad: peeled beetroot, 1/2 red onion, carrot or two, a green apple, smallish piece of ginger, olive oil, bit of coriander leaves and lemon juice all blitzed together in the food processor/thermomix. Yum.

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  12. Now that does look very good. I do love a beetroot dip, it’s my first choice of dip when we have Turkish. Incidentally I have a pack of beetroot I bought today. Might substitute the pistachios for other nuts to save a trip into town.

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  13. I love beets in all their ways but I finally tried them roasted for the first time summer before last and I have never looked back! Delicious! Your spread looks great too and I wish you had added a shot of it on top of the pumpkin soup. Bet that color combo was amazing!

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  14. Pingback: Top Tips for making Beetroot Kvass | cityhippyfarmgirl

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