All content copyright Katrina Hall 2008 through 2018

Sunday, April 10, 2011

golden beets and mother hen

When my children were small, they could often be picky about what they would or wouldn't eat. Thinking I was being clever, I offered them a smorgasbord for breakfast, packed lunch, or dinner. Of course, I ended up making three different dinners most of the time – not something I would repeat these these days . No Tiger Mother moi! I was more like my very favorite hen in our various flocks of chickens – Old Black Hen, who adored being a mother so much she stole the other hens eggs. When she was very old, on a cold night, she died sitting on those stolen eggs. I digress.


Getting back to the point of this story, I often found a little this, a little that, presented in a pretty and tasty fashion encouraged my children to try new foods – especially if I renamed it. Broccoli was “little trees”. Brussels sprouts morphed into” little cabbages” , especially when french fries and mac and cheese seemed to be the favorite choices year round. When the kids got sick, I made chicken soup and toast fingers, smoothies and cinnamon toast, along with Sleepytime tea. But they did get to try a lot of new herbs and veggies as time went along, and I'm happy to say they both enjoy new foods as young adults.

~ I noticed these gorgeous beets one day at the supermarket, tucked away in a corner, simply glowing, and I had to buy a few to taste. I usually try new vegetables first uncooked, so I can get an image and taste set in my mind. Then, I might saute or steam, or throw into a soup, experimenting. These clearly tasted the best when they were raw and golden – the flavor and color diminished when steamed or sauteed. I tried shredding them into a simple salad with balsamic vinegar ( the real deal, from Modena), a little pepper, and some shards of parmesan cheese ( as with the bok choy salad I made last year, salt and olive oil just made it taste odd, so I skipped it.) This would be such a pretty little addition to any dinner ( or smorgasbord) – the taste is fresh and similar to a parsnip/celery root. Paired with arugula, a few smashed baby potatoes and steak, fish, or chicken, it really is a sparkling salad.

~ The recipe: Well, there isn't really a recipe:) I used one smallish golden beet, washed and peeled or not, trimmed, then shredded on a grater, per person. A handful of arugula per person. About 1 teaspoon Modena balsamic vinegar per serving. Freshly grated pepper Several shards of parmesan cheese, per serving And that's it! What I liked about these beets was not only the taste, but the lack of beet-red hands and bleeding into the arugula – always a problem.

This just in! Inspired by a recipe from Simply Recipes, I made this marvelous brussels sprouts dish that couldn't be simpler.

1 cup peeled, diced golden beets ( large dice)

1 cup trimmed brussels sprouts, cut in half

Simmer the beets and sprouts in a little water until tender.

Drain and add a little chopped fresh rosemary, a tiny bit of butter, and salt and pepper.

That's it!


winestainedcloth said...

We grew some heirloom golden beets that were earthy yet sweet this year. We still have a few in the ground ready for harvest so I'm taking your suggestion and doing what you did with the remaining beets.

katrina said...

Lucky duck, Donna! I don't know if you saw the addition to the post ( Simply Recipe's brussels sprouts and golden beets), which is also fantastic. These beets are just delicious to eat - and pretty on the table. Thanks so much and good luck with your beets!