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Help! I am trying to like beets but struggling. Healthy ideas?

I have never been a big fan of beets but as I am undergoing medical treatment at the moment, I have been told that one of the best food I can eat to help the process is this very colourful root. I made some rostis which were ok but now I'm racking my brain for healthy beet-based dishes where the distinctive taste of them is not too prominent.

I'd be grateful for any suggestions you might have!

Thanks!

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  1. Roast beets are the way to go. Couldn't be easier and brings out their sweetness:
    Preheat the oven to 375F,
    Trim off the greens if there are any,
    Scrub them as you would a baking potato,
    Place them (whole) in a small roasting pan - 8"sq. - 9"sq., etc... whatever you need to fit,
    Add a couple tablespoons water,
    Seal pan tightly with aluminum foil,
    Roast for about 1 hour or till a paring knife easily pierces through.

    When cool enough to handle, take 2 paper towels and rub the skin off,
    Slice and serve drizzled with EVOO & seasoned with a bit of sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. Most times I don't even do that... just slice and serve plain...they're that sweet!

    4 Replies
    1. re: Gio

      I would absolutely agree that roasting is the way to go, but I think that the method above steams rather than roasts. Roasting is a dry heat method and intensifies and caramelizes the sugars in the vegetable. Steaming is a valid way to cook beets but if you're looking for something a little more palatable to a not-so-big beet fan, go with uncovered, dry roasting. In fact, there are some roasting methods that have beets covered in salt or at least roasted on a bed of salt. Dry salt, hot oven... can't get any drier than that.

      To make things simple, I like to peel and quarter beets BEFORE roasting. Sounds a little unorthodox but it eliminates any post-cooking preparation and it lends itself nicely to roasting with other veggies. I often do a sweet potato, turnip, beet vegetable roast. Trim up, peel down, and quarter or slice all the vegetables appropriately. Toss in olive oil, salt/pepper and in the oven they go. Roast until they're done. Take some fresh thyme or rosemary or any fresh green herb and toss with the finished vegetables.

      1. re: Gio

        Easier yet, I just rinse any dirt off the skin comes off anyways, just wrap in a piece of foil. I drizzle with a little oil, s/p and bake. No pans no clean up 1 hr at 350-375. Check after 45 min. Like a potato, fork tender. Remove cool and the skins will peel right off. Now what to do?

        Salads; olive oil, s/p; warm or cold; a orange vinaigrette; or roast with other vegetables with is great; I have tons of recipes.

        chilled with dill, warm with bacon onions and vinegar. I even make a beat pasta. A salad with blue cheese, arugula or spinach is great with fennel.

        I have a roasted mushroom and beet salad with cabbage which is great.

        They are also wonderful roasted and chopped in a sauce of white wine and rosemary over pork loins or chops. I have also chopped them with apple and pears and stuffed in chicken breasts or pork chops which is quite good.

        Beet soup is very good.

        Chilled beets with a honey vinaigrette is great topped with a gorgonzola and marscapone blend, chopped walnuts on a mixed green salad.

        So many options. I have hundreds of recipes. What do you like?

        1. re: kchurchill5

          Would you please share your mushroom, beet and cabbage salad recipe please?

          1. re: PumpkinHead

            It is take off from a Chinese salad I had but also from something I enjoyed over lettuce once ... So I combined both and really enjoy it. It combines crisp cabbage, with my favorite mushrooms and beets all lightly roasted and a little tang with a light Asian dressing.

            About 3 cups napa cabbage (I prefer napa)
            10 medium size crimini mushrooms roasted
            NOTE: you can use rehydrated shitakis as well as then thin sliced or julienne but not roasted but tossed in the marinade as well.
            3 medium size beets roasted
            1 small fennel bulb roasted (If you don't like fennel) and onion would be ok
            5 scallions chopped

            In the oven roast the beets, cabbage, mushrooms and fennel. All the veggies get this mixture ... 1 tablespoon minced garlic, 1/2 cup olive oil, 2 tablespoons soy, 1 teaspoon ginger, salt and pepper. Beets I wrap in foil since they will take 45 minutes at 400. I usually cut the fennel and mushrooms in half, and the cabbage in large wedges and then toss but keep the beets whole in foil. I put all the veggies even the beets in foil on the cookie sheet. Obviously the beets can stay in longer the mushrooms, cabbage and fennel only take15-20 min. Sometimes I take out the cabbage first, then the mushrooms and fennel You want them roasted but still firm. After roasting the skin will peel right off the beets and then you can dice or julienne, depending how you want to present it.

            In a large bowl add the cabbage, the roasted mushrooms julienne sliced, fennel also thin sliced, scallions and beets. Then add the dressing and toss.
            Dressing: 1 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice, 1/8 cup sesame oil, 1/8 cup vegetable oil, 1 teaspoon white wine vinegar, 1 tablespoon sugar, 1 teaspoon additional soy sauce (optional)

            It is light and crisp, but a hearty flavor being roasted

      2. Roasted, yep...really great...truly: any roasted or grilled veggie is really great, I'm finding out. Would your medical treatment rule out pickled beets? I've seen some recipes for pickled beets that call for low amounts of salt -- personally, I would just leave the salt out completely since the pickling liquid involves vinegar..well, and sugar. So, the sugar may not be good for your medical treatment either, I don't know. Aunt Nellie's makes a jarred pickled beet that is low in sodium if store-bought is acceptable. Fresh would be best though, I'm sure. Just throwing out an idea here--not everyone likes vinegar-y flavors.

        1. If I remember correctly, the NYTimes had a recipe last week for beets with a garlic-walnut sauce that was delish.

          22 Replies
          1. re: Joebob

            Made that recipe - very good but then I like beets. Also good (and visual) is avocado butter on roasted beets. Another great way to eat beets is shredded like slaw and dressed with a vinaigrette (I like to add pickled onion).

            1. re: alwayscooking

              shredded is great, forgot all about that. Again I love beets

              1. re: alwayscooking

                Shredded, with a little sour cream. Great salad

                1. re: purple goddess

                  Or shredded with fage yogurt! Umm

                  Other vegetables that blends with and neutralizes some of the earthiness of the beets are carrots and potatoes - either as a part of the slaw or roasted/boiled and then mashed together.

                  1. re: alwayscooking

                    I second the shredded beet salad idea, but mine uses RAW beets. I don't know if the recipes above are cooked or raw. It's shredded beets with some kind of cheese (Manchego?) and lemon. I'll be glad to post the recipe if anybody's interested.

                    1. re: oakjoan

                      I'd love the recipe as I only really like beets when they are raw.

                      1. re: oakjoan

                        I would like that recipe too -- thanks :)

                        1. re: oakjoan

                          I have a couple, raw shredded and cooked shredded, both. Completely different and still both are great!

                        2. re: alwayscooking

                          shredded beet salad with shredded pears....fresh mint...yum!

                        3. re: purple goddess

                          I done sliced with sour cream and dill, but not shredded. Next time. I make them a lot. Love them

                          1. re: purple goddess

                            add chopped prunes for extra yumminess

                          2. re: alwayscooking

                            The sauce would go great on a whole buncha things, e.g. fried fish.

                            1. re: alwayscooking

                              Bought some beautiful golden beets at our Growers Market yesterday. Roasting sounds great. What exactly is avocado butter? Unlike OP, I'm not looking primarily for healthy :)

                              1. re: c oliver

                                Avocado, half again the amount of butter (or more), a squeeze of lemon or lime juice, and salt to taste (I use unsalted butter). Optionally add cilantro and/or chili powder (mixed, chapotle, paprika, etc). Smother on french bread or vegetables. It's very pretty with beets - I'd omit the chilies.

                                1. re: alwayscooking

                                  I make a sauce with sour cream avacado, 1/2 and 1/2 with cilantro, lime, cumin and a little chili powder. Great on fingerling potatoes or even just baked potatoes, also great on coleslaw, but never tried beets. Sounds interesting.

                                  I use it in a tomato salad with thin sliced onions, cucumbers and tomatoes, just a light coating which makes a great almost Mexican flare, but a nice salad.

                                2. re: c oliver

                                  A followup. I did a "hybridization" of several recs. I peeled the uncooked beets and cut into approx. 1/2" cubes, put in a foil pack with a drizzle of olive oil, salt and pepper, and cooked at 375 (bumped the heat up at the end as I was also doing Vidalia onions in a second pack and figured I need to). Made avocado butter (omg, is that ever good?). The beets came straight from foil pack into a bowl and then the butter. As someone wrote, they really did taste like very good, sweet, summer corn. I gotta go with Karl S re peeling first. Not having to handle hot beets, much less all the color mess, was such a great idea. Have a few more and will be heading out for more. This is a REAL keeper. Thanks. all.

                              2. re: Joebob

                                And they had a recipe a few weeks ago (Mark Bittman?) for Mexican marinaded beets which I made and loved as much as the usual roasted version. Very very easy and full of flavor.

                                1. re: coll

                                  Here is that Mexican marinated version: (this link has me on a beet sprrrrreeee!)

                                  http://bitten.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/...

                                  1. re: foxy fairy

                                    Thanks for finding the recipe , I couldn't for the life of me. Luckily I wrote it down as soon as I tasted it and it will be made again shortly, as I just got a bag of blood oranges. But I just used Tropicana the first time and it was great!

                                2. re: Joebob

                                  Here is that recipe for bees with garlic-walnut sauce. I think I will add feta. I usually do the foil-roasted beets and serve with lemon juice, gorgonzola, and tamari-toasted walnuts. So this will be slightly different. :)

                                  http://www.nytimes.com/2009/03/04/din...

                                  1. re: foxy fairy

                                    ha, I mean a recipe for beets, not bees. Buzzz!

                                    1. re: foxy fairy

                                      Reporting back on the New York Times recipe with garlic-walnut sauce:

                                      YES!

                                      I just reread the thread and so many beet dishes include walnuts. This is different because the walnuts are ground into the dressing!

                                      (in case you can't open the link, as it was a little tricky) -- For this recipe, just roast four beets in foil as described here. Then heat six cloves garlic in olive oil, until they begin to soften. Then add some chopped walnuts (I had about 1/3 cup, recipe calls for more) and cook a few more minutes. Squeeze juice of one orange. In a mini-processor blend the walnut, garlic, and oil into a paste, and then blend in the juice. Add salt and pepper. Cool the beets, unwrap, and chop. Combine with dressing.

                                      The texture here is fantastic, and the flavor is also very very good! I will make this again. I didn't have feta around but I think it would give it that little kick to make it fantastic!

                                      *foxy*

                                  2. Beetroot chips - grease/oil a baking tray and slice beets thinly, then bake them till they're as crispy as you want them to be (don't burn them!)

                                    1. Paula, Like me, it sounds like you're not too crazy about how beets taste and you're looking for recipes that somewhat disguise their "unique" (kinda sweet, yet vaguely dirty, musty, parsnippy...) flavor. Roasting intensifies their "uniqueness". I do NOT recommend beet soup unless you really are a glutton for punishment! How bout' a little grated in with some potatoes for a very colorful latke? If they're fried, how bad can they be? I'm interested to hear more suggestions as beets are way-y-y down on my list of favorite veggies. Even below eggplant and olives (!) , but above okra. adam

                                      3 Replies
                                      1. re: adamshoe

                                        My beet soup FYI, is very flavorful and NOT just beets. A very mild and sweet flavor. Not the normal chilled red cold beet soup. There are many variations which are very herbed and mild

                                        1. re: kchurchill5

                                          kchurchill5 -- could you post the recipe for your beet soup? Sounds intriguing. thanks!

                                          *foxy fairy*

                                          1. re: foxy fairy

                                            This first one if my favorite, all the vegetables make it very comforting and beet gives it a little tang.

                                            The second one has tons of ingredients that make it hot, sweet and spicy. I got this from a friend who made it for me a couple of years ago and I loved it.

                                            Soup #1
                                            1 large sweet potato (peeled) and 2 medium white potatoes (peeled) chopped, 2 onions and carrots chopped, 1 parsnip chopped, 2 teaspoons minced garlic, 1 can chick peas drained not rinsed, 2 medium zucchinis chopped, 1 jar or can of pickled beets (15 oz) chopped, 2 cans of about 30 oz of vegetable broth but you can use chicken too, 2 tablespoons of fresh parsley and dill, chopped, salt and pepper, olive oil

                                            Saute carrots, onions and garlic about 5 minutes, then add potatoes and broth and cook until soft. Add the zucchini, chick peas, seasoning and cook a few more minutes. Add the pickled beets before serving. The carrots and sweet potato give it that sweet flavor and the beets a little tang.
                                            --------------------------------

                                            Soup #2
                                            2 cups of roasted beets chopped very fine (in a food processor but not a total puree), 2 cups onions chopped, 1 medium carrot shredded, 1-2 jalapenos seeded and diced (depending on heat), 2 teaspoons fresh ginger minced, 1/4 cup un-cooked rice, 6 cups vegetable broth, 1/3 cup coconut milk, 1 tablespoons fresh parsley / dill, / corriander seeds ground, 1 tablespoon cumin and honey, 1/2 teaspoon tumeric and ground red pepper or ground thai chilies, salt, olive oil. Greek yogurt for a garnish

                                            Saute onions and carrot in olive oil until soft then add the jalapeno, ginger, all the seasonings (except for the honey), and rice. Slightly saute and then add the broth and cook until the rice in done. Puree with the immersion blender until smooth. Add the coconut milk, beets, honey and heat until warm. Serve with a dollop of greek yogurt. Adjust your spices according to your heat tolerance.

                                            Enjoy!

                                      2. Pickled beets are nice and they lose a bit of their earthy taste (which I love)
                                        The ones you buy already made (Bick's etc) are not that good, but if you don't like beets that may be a good thing as they are relatively tasteless compared to homemade. But like I said, in your case that could be a good thing. Won't cost much to find out.

                                        1. I love to roast them in foil with olive oil and a little salt, peel and dice them up and toss them in a lentil soup (just lentils cooked in chicken stock- I usually use red because I like the texture).

                                          1. Paula, first and foremost, best of luck to you in your treatments!

                                            Roast beets and dress in a yogurt/lemon/horseradish sauce, either warm or cold. This floors people who hate beets. Love it.

                                            Also, investigate a traditional Russian borscht recipe. You can make it meaty or vegetarian, depending on what you're supposed to have. And it has lots of other very healthy things like cabbage and carrots. If you want a recipe, just say the word.

                                            1. I've actually seen a lot of cake (esp. chocolate cake) recipes using a significant amount of beet for color. Tyler Florence uses four beets to make four single serving cakes, which isn't too shoddy a dose, I don't think: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/ty...

                                              There's also one for brownies and red devil cake here: http://www.mariquita.com/recipes/beet...

                                              1. You know, I'd pair them with other strong flavors that you like, to make them more palatable. There's a great creamy mustard vinaigrette recipe in Deborah Madison's Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone, and it's fantastic with beets. Do use creme fraiche if you can get it, and dress the beets generously, then mix with your favorite salad green. I also pair beets sliced thinly with pears, walnuts, and chevre goat cheese or sheep's milk feta (Valbreso is available at Costco) in salads. If these complementary flavors are ones you already like, I hope they'll make the beets flavor less prominent for you.

                                                My dad only ever ate beets pickled, so if that appeals, they're easy.

                                                1. This beet-ginger salad from Jean-Georges Vongerichten is a different twist on beets that I like. As a beet lover, I'm generally not looking to mask the flavor (probably why I use less vinegar than the recipe specifies), but perhaps the pungent ginger offers a bright enough contrast with the beets for your tastes.

                                                  In this recipe, Jean-Georges uses chives as a garnish. I think beets and chives have a nice affinity, and I'll often dress beets with nothing but chopped chives, pepper, and a bit of salt. Not sure that's what you're looking for, though.

                                                  Hope your treatment goes well.

                                                  http://www.foodandwine.com/recipes/be...

                                                  1. Thanks everyone for some great ideas! I will definetely try roasting them and serving them with a vinaigrette as a side dish as well as in chips and latkes (although less frequently as I try not to eat too many fried foods at the moment). I was also thinking about a fritatta, mixed up with potatoes, mushrooms, onions and some ricotta cheese? Not sure whether it would work but it's worth a go...

                                                    Thanks for the good wishes! I've got 4 more months to go and lots of healthy recipes to experiment with as it's what keeps me sane!

                                                    2 Replies
                                                    1. re: Paula76

                                                      Just remember that beets are often used to make granulated sugar... in other words they are loaded with natural sweetness. Caramelization is key in my opinion.

                                                      1. re: Paula76

                                                        If you make a fritatta, go with golden beets rather than the red varieties. The red ones will bleed into the eggs and on every other vegetable, and make an unappealing purple/ red fritatta. Gold ones are pretty but the color doesn't bleed, and you'll get the same flavor.

                                                      2. I'm not a beet lover--in fact I positively dread canned beets.

                                                        However, I do like them raw. There is a recipe on epicurious, which tosses the julienned raw beets with lots of parsley in a vinaigrette. http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/foo...

                                                        I can happily eat them this way--it's like raw vs. cooked carrots (which I also don't like.

                                                        )

                                                        The only other time I really liked a beet was one that had been roasted with a whole chicken. The savory aspect of the chicken and roasting balance out the beet's sweetness.

                                                        1 Reply
                                                        1. re: dct

                                                          Thank you for the suggestion. I've never enjoyed beets, either, and I also dislike cooked carrots but like those raw. Never occurred to me that the same might be true of the beets!

                                                        2. Like you, I try to like beets. The one way I really do like them is as a salad with a slightly sweet vinaigrette-- I usually get a store-bought rasberry vinaigrette and mix with toasted walnuts, feta cheese and a little red onion. Yummy. Also, as others have mentioned raw grated is good -- add to salads. Good luck and good health.

                                                          1. One very easy and good way to get a lot of beets into you is to cook them (I steam them in the microwave, but you could cook them another way; steaming does not concentrate the flavors, though, so you may prefer it), peel them, and squeeze lots of lime juice over them, then grind black pepper over them. Served cold, they are refreshing; I haven't tried them warm. I understand that this method of preparation is common in Mexico.

                                                            1. Roasted beets are delicious in a salad with some goat or feta cheese. I scrub each beet, cut off the top and bottom, and rub the skin with a tiny bit of olive oil. Each beet gets wrapped in it's own foil package. All the foil packages are placed on a cookie sheet and I roast them for at least an hour. I eat the skins too..

                                                              You can also cut them into cubes and roast in a baking dish along with butternut squash, sweet potatoes, turnips, and onions. It's delicious with a bit of cool yogurt on top.

                                                              If you have a food processor, shredding beets is really easy and not so messy. I shred lots of beets, and mix with shreded daikon and carrots. You can also mix with cabbage for a healthier slaw. Good with a yogurt dressing or peanut dressing.

                                                              1. I was just wondering, why beets? Is it because they are high in iron? If so, there are a lot of other foods you could eat that you might like better and therefore get even more iron.

                                                                1 Reply
                                                                1. re: billieboy

                                                                  Good question, and I agree. It may be personal info, and that's understandable, but there are probably other vegetables that contain the suggested nutrients aside from beets.

                                                                  Besides, you eat enough red beets and it makes your pee red/pink. :-) Fun with vegetables, but not always a welcome sight in the morning.

                                                                2. Roast the beets. Halve and then slice. Toss with arugula, toasted walnuts, crumbled blue cheese and mint leaves with a vinaigrette. The blue cheese and mint should take your mind off the beets.

                                                                  1. Beetroot risotto is delicious and looks stunning. Here is quite a complicated version which I'm sure could be simplified (eg roast beets and make stock a day ahead). Pictures are accurate, it really does look that good!

                                                                    http://images.google.co.uk/imgres?img...

                                                                    1. 1. Peel beets. The peel is bitter. I peel before cooking - while it may seem more labor intensive, the bleeding of color is much less indelible from uncooked beets than cooked beets. While beets are often served sliced or in large chunks, the somewhat grainy texture can be off-putting to many palates, and if that is the case for you, a dice would be the better option.

                                                                      2. Roasted beets have more well rounded flavor than steamed or boiled.

                                                                      3. Roasted beets taste remarkably like fresh summer corn. If you think of them that way, you may have an easier time appreciating them. Especially if they are diced.

                                                                      9 Replies
                                                                      1. re: Karl S

                                                                        Hi Karl, Are you saying to dice BEFORE roasting? Or after? Thanks.

                                                                        1. re: c oliver

                                                                          I would dice before roasting - it will take much less time to roast them. And they are much easier to handle at room temp....

                                                                          1. re: Karl S

                                                                            Butting in here (it is CH!)

                                                                            Wash and then wrap individually in foil to roast. They peel so easily after, nearly falling out of their skins, and can be kept in the foil for a week. But then I tend to make a roast a bunch of things all at once.

                                                                            1. re: alwayscooking

                                                                              The juices from peeling before roasting are far less indelible than those afterwards. I've converted from post-to-pre peeling.

                                                                              1. re: Karl S

                                                                                K
                                                                                I'll try it
                                                                                but I'm always proud of my red-tinted
                                                                                cooking fingers

                                                                                1. re: alwayscooking

                                                                                  that looks
                                                                                  so much like a
                                                                                  poem honoring the color of
                                                                                  beets

                                                                                  1. re: foxy fairy

                                                                                    the poem is in
                                                                                    the creation and
                                                                                    the enjoyment of
                                                                                    beautiful sustaining
                                                                                    food

                                                                              2. re: alwayscooking

                                                                                I just did 7 the other day, all in one foil pouch, a little evoo, s/p nothing more, cooled peeled and put in a ziploc. I ate 2 just sliced, 1 in a salad, and 1 tonight over salad with blue cheese, the other couple tomorrow. Just sliced with a vinaigrette is fine for me. I love them just plain.

                                                                                Couldn't be better. How easy

                                                                              3. re: Karl S

                                                                                To me they loose some moisture, but that is just me. I prefer whole roasted. I will saute diced but roasting, not diced.

                                                                          2. Some really wonderful ideas for me to try. I will have a go this weekend with grating and using in salads and slaws and roasting them and then move on to the rest slowly but surely. As regards the reason why I am told I could benefit from including them in my diet, it i not because of the iron content (which I do not need) but because of their liver-cleansing properties which are widely documented (google 'liver cleansing' and you'll see how many beet references come up!) My cleansing needs have nothing to do with alcohol, I hasten to add, but with other medical situation. It's only for 4 months but I reckon that if I can learn to like beets, it can only be a good addition to my diet and these wonderful ideas really help. The risotto sounds great too...Thanks!

                                                                            1. I use a mandolin to cut beets very thin, then deep fry them as chips.

                                                                              When I was in Australia, they put pickled beets and a fried egg on top of burgers.

                                                                              1 Reply
                                                                              1. re: bigfellow

                                                                                New Zealand, too. Had a bud from there who made them all the time... Kiwiburgers.

                                                                                http://www.flickr.com/photos/92115617...

                                                                              2. Beet mashed potatoes! Cook some beets along with your potatoes, then proceed as if you are making regular mashed potatoes. Puree the beets to mix in, and voila! Hot pink mashed potatoes that are SO flavorful.

                                                                                http://www.eatrealgood.com

                                                                                1. Here's a recipe for marinated beetroot that I love. It's Italian, and really delicious as part of an antipasti plate, or just straight out of the jar!

                                                                                  http://www.bbc.co.uk/food/recipes/dat...

                                                                                  3 Replies
                                                                                  1. re: greedygirl

                                                                                    I tried to make beet chips but they burned. What is the trick? Only a few came out, but those that did were tasty! I just need to grease the pan not the beet slices? How long and at waht temp do I need to cook them?

                                                                                    1. re: lilmomma

                                                                                      I deep fry them at 350 and not for too long, 2-3 minutes tops.

                                                                                      1. re: lilmomma

                                                                                        Toss them in oil, put on a dark pan at 375 and watch! When they begin to crisp, turn over and continue to watch. Depending on their thickeness, it could just be minutes on each side.

                                                                                    2. I am reading this thread with great interest. I am a beet disliker who has tried everything. I like them better now - I learned as long as I cut them up small and don't chew them, they are not too bad.

                                                                                      1. Gio said it- roasting does it, but start with organically grown as they have neither the cardboard nor the dirt flavor most people associate with this under appreciated crop. Diced roasted beets paired with diced Golden Delicious apples and chopped walnuts make a great salad. Dress with a couple Tbsp. balsamic vinegar, a splash of orange juice, a Tbsp. honey, and a dash of nutmeg. If your Farmers Market has heirloom veg growers, be sure to check for the striped beet 'Chioggia' It has rings of white & red and is the sweetest and prettiest. After all, presentation is everything...

                                                                                        1. Beet-onion salad. Keeps well in the fridge for a cool summer treat.

                                                                                          http://www.foodinjars.com/2009/02/26/...

                                                                                          Makes good use of canned beets, too.

                                                                                          1. I had an aversion to beets when I had only had canned beets. They can taste a bit "basement". There is an unusual mixture of sweet and bitter in the flavor that can be off-putting. However, I have come up with a "principle" of beet enjoyment that works well for me. I can say emphatically that I am now a thorough beet-enjoyer. Using a contrasting flavor with beets is key for me. Sour/tangy as in a vinegar or vinergarette. Hot as with a mustard or a little horseradish in a soup. Salty as with feta cheese. Beets taste really good in contrast to something opposite in flavor and texture.

                                                                                            1. My theory is that people hate beets because 90% of the time, they're served with vinegar. first, try cooking them the way Mark Bittman of the NYTs suggests. Wash, cover in foil, roast in a cookie sheet at 400F oven until done. About an hour for larger ones; less for smaller ones. Take them out when a fork pierces them easily.

                                                                                              You can store them in the frig until you're ready to eat them. The peeling will fall off.

                                                                                              Simplest --- heat (if needed) serve with butter and sea salt
                                                                                              Other toppings -- Za'atar, Cumin and olive oil, whole grain mustard and olive oil. toasted sesame seed and walnut oil...

                                                                                              1 Reply
                                                                                              1. re: Milliezz

                                                                                                Nothing to do with the vinegar. I dislike them because, as WCchopper says, they taste like basement smells. The first time I made them it was by roasting in foil - despite the oil and seasonings, they were dreadful! I should have anticipated that, because the foil holds in the moisture so it's as much steaming as roasting. Next time I pan-roasted peeled chunks, which was far better. Harvard beets - not too bad. I will have to try them grated raw.

                                                                                              2. Borscht (beet soup) with sour cream is great. Does anyone know a good source of borscht in the area? I had a craving the other day and didn't feel like making it myself

                                                                                                1. I never used to eat beets either but have grown fond of them, since I started going to the farmers markets in Santa Monica. I've found a few good recipes at epicurious.com, including one for maple-glazed horseradish beets. I've also made them with balasmic vinegar and thyme, mint, lemon juice and toasted cumin seeds, orange-glazed, etc. You can also go to the Delicious Living website, since it's also got some very good recipes.

                                                                                                  Good luck with your medical treatments.

                                                                                                  1. Wow! I'm shocked at all of the beet lovers, not much mention of golden beets though. You should most definitely try them. Much less messy and still perfectly sweet! Locally (Jacksonville, FL area) they are available at the Fresh Market and Whole Foods. So many great recipes posted Enjoy!!!

                                                                                                    1 Reply
                                                                                                    1. re: jobee1111

                                                                                                      I love to buy the conveniently packaged "Steamed Baby Beets" from the Melissa brand OR Trader Joe's sells a brand for a couple bucks cheaper!

                                                                                                      I make this very very easy salad at least once a week...

                                                                                                      Slice beets thinly
                                                                                                      sprinkle w/ a touch of sea salt and pepper
                                                                                                      Crushed walnuts or pecans... a small/med hand full sprinkled over the beets
                                                                                                      drizzle balsamic vinegar over them. I actually love to use a flavored balsamic...blueberry, strawberry or raspberry!

                                                                                                      You could always do goat cheese crumbles in stead of nuts!

                                                                                                      Sounds simple, but very delicious and very quick and easy! You could steam your own beets and not buy prepackaged, of course.

                                                                                                    2. I love beets! I just had a lovely beet salad, very thin sliced, a little olive oil and ving. walnuts and goat cheese! Heaven on a dish. Also, raw beets are a great snack. I just peel and chop and keep them in a bowl in the fridge...eat like you would a radish. Quick and easy crunch!

                                                                                                      1. I apologize if this is a repeat, I have not read through all the responses, but if you have a food processor, peel a raw beet and use the grating attachment to grate it, then grate a carrot and mix lemon juice, mayo, mustard- it is so tasty.
                                                                                                        I add plain grated beet to sandwiches too.

                                                                                                        1. Throw one in with fresh carrot, cucumber juice, etc.

                                                                                                          1. If you are in Berkeley, CA, try Rick and Ann's on Claremont Ave. They have fabulous Red Flannel Hash which is made with beets. I am a beet lover and would put them in anything. Check out www.chow.com/recipes/11443 or google red flannel hash with beets.

                                                                                                            1. I did not like beets until I had some fresh grated raw beets on a salad. It was soooo different than the slimy beets in a can I'd had before.

                                                                                                              Mrs. Ks Tollhouse restaurant in Silver Spring, MD serves food family style. Their salad course includes little bowls of grated beets, carrots and turnips to sprinkle on the salad. I learned to like turnips that way too!

                                                                                                              2 Replies
                                                                                                              1. re: Divalicias

                                                                                                                Raw beets, carrots and onions shredded or grated are great on a creamy potato soup. I have even sauteed all three together and used them to top salads like you had too which are great. But I love the crisp greens and then the warm sauteed veggies, a nice combo

                                                                                                                1. re: kchurchill5

                                                                                                                  The grated beets atop the creamy potato soup -- YUM. Sounds delicious and beautiful.

                                                                                                              2. Soup! Best way to hide all kind of vegetables.

                                                                                                                Melt butter.
                                                                                                                Sweat mirepoix.
                                                                                                                In the meantime brown some flank steak, chopped in smaller pieces (um...I think that was the cut...basically there's a bone in the middle and A LOT of connective tissue)
                                                                                                                Put in some tomato paste in the mirepoix, dump steak piece (including one) in it
                                                                                                                Dice potatoes and beets and dump those in (I usually dump it in like 40 minutes before it's done)
                                                                                                                I also like adding some srichi sauce in it...cause that stuff is crack...
                                                                                                                It takes me three hours to make it though. But lasts for quite a while.

                                                                                                                2 Replies
                                                                                                                1. re: AngelSanctuary

                                                                                                                  One thing, why hide vegetables? ... beets can be good. No reason to hide them. Almost anyone can enjoy beets and should, there is no reason to hide them, just cook in a way to enjoy. There are many soups and casseroles that keep them in the background as a nice flavor but not too strong but still offer a great flavor to the dish. That way you may be willing to enjoy them.

                                                                                                                  1. re: kchurchill5

                                                                                                                    ...because she said she hates the taste of beets?

                                                                                                                    Oh or did you mean why I made that soup? I think the beet adds another depth of flavor to the soup but not necessarily beety because of the meat and tomato but it'll taste different without it. It's a good soup, everyone I know who had it loves it!