laurenlikestocook

Give Beets a Chance

In Challenge, Rice, Salad, Saving Money, Vegan, Vegetables, Vegetarian on July 6, 2012 at 3:56 pm

I think beets are one of the most underrated vegetables.  That’s probably because people are reminded of the Del Monte canned variety, and shudder at its preservedness.  However, beets can not only be delicious, but also super good for you.  There’s a reason juice bars include beets as a main base in most juices.  Beets have an incredible detoxifying affect on both your liver and urinary tract.  But enough hippy hullabaloo, let’s move on to delishifying these babies.

There are many ways to prepare beats, but most people are familiar with the roasted version.  The flavor is sweet and concentrated this way, which pairs perfectly with goat cheese, nuts, and fruit in a salad.

Another common method is boiling.  I’ve never tried that myself, but if I were to make some borscht I’d certainly have to.

Perusing through other food blogs, I came across a post of mixed root vegetable chips that included beets.  I can’t seem to locate it now, but I thought that was an excellent beet preparation method!  Hey, they sell Kale chips for 8 bux a pop and I can make those at home, why not create my own beet chips?  I tried some out this week, and I think they came out pretty tasty (0r at least the ones that didn’t burn).

I think I need to invest in a mandolin to perfect these chips.  Here’s what I did….

Baked Curry Beet Chip

1 bunch red beets (about 5-6)
1 tbsp EVOO
1/2 tsp yellow curry powder
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp turmeric
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp black pepper
1 tsp sea salt

I had to do this in batches.  My first batch I tried at 350º.  I sliced up the roots as uniformly as I could, but to no avail.  I added them to a resealable bag with the oil, and shook them up til all the chips were coated.  Then I lined a roasting tray with the chips.

I baked them for about 30 minutes until most of them were crispy.  While they baked I mixed the curry powder with the other spices.

This was the first batch outcome.

The more orangy colored ones are crispier.

I sprinkled them right away with the seasoning.

Then I transferred the chips to a paper towel lined plate to cool off.  Let’s say I ate only half of them.

Hard to tell, but that was one of the winners!

Some of the pieces were crispy; others were soft.  I decided to raise the temp to 400º and set my timer for 20 minutes.  At that point, they looked almost ready.  Five minutes later, they were burnt to a crisp.  No photo because I am so embarrassed :(.

The ones that were crispy and not burned were really tasty!  I great alternative to potato chips.

Surprisingly, my new favorite way to enjoy beets is raw in a slaw!  I’ve made one before, and I am constantly experimenting with new recipes.  On July 4th, I used half a bunch of raw beets, some broccoli stems, and red onion for a slaw.

I had a little bit of dill mayo left from making potato salad, so I added that plus some extra mustard and vinegar.  I served the slaw with some grilled zucchini blossoms, and copped out with a veggie burger and salad.

Raw zucchini blossoms cut in half lengthwise.

Grilled to perfection!

Slaw, grilled veggies, can’t go wrong.

I love using the left over slaw for breakfast!  I know that sounds weird, but it’s nice to have on the side with an omelet.  Plus, you get in an extra serving of veggies early in the AM.  Woot woot!

I’ve also mentioned before that beet leaves are edible.  Don’t throw them away!  I eat them raw in salad, but you can easily saute them with garlic and olive oil.

Beet greens with French radish, red onion, avocado, and orange. Paired with cheesy brown rice and leftover grilled squash blossoms.

Any of these ideas peak your interest?  I certainly hope so!  If not, I’ve seen baking with beets (think red velvet cupcakes).  Now that’s one I’ve never tried, but who am I to keep someone from enjoying beets anyway seen fit?

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  1. Awesome post! Now I want more beets so I can try all of your delicious recipes 🙂

    Come and link up to this week’s party when you get a chance…http://inherchucks.com/2012/07/05/whats-in-the-box-33/. Hope to see you there!

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