And the Beet Goes On…
When you think of beets, what pops into your mind? For many of you, you think of the deep red blood turnip, the one that bleeds into other foods on your plate if you aren’t careful. Others think of canned beets, soft and tender, sometimes too soft.
Me? I think of fresh white, gold, purple, red, and even carrot orange beets. Of course, I’m treading onto the soil of the heirloom DiChioggia, an Italian beet known for its striped red and white interior, and its sweet, mild taste. Then I’m experimenting with the lush Golden beet, so buttery in its presentation and its mouth feel as well. Don’t even get me drooling over the Cylindria, the long, thick carrot-shaped heirloom beet from Denmark. Also known as “Formanova”, this beet has tasty beet greens to add to its delicious flavors.
A farmer in Hettinger, ND, grows these beets, and his sister Rhonda shares them with my twin sister, Barbara. Since we often dine together, I reap the benefits, and I am hooked on the incredible flavor of these vegetables. I am now growing some in any patch of dirt I can find in my yard! With only a 50 -60 day maturity, I will be seeing beets in September. Just in time to squirrel away food for my winter hibernation!
Here is a recipe Barbara and I made (after she painted the picture above) – we made beets twice and added fresh garden herbs each time. This recipe shows what we felt were the best herbs of our experimentation, as well as best process. Please enjoy and let the beet go on… and on!
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White Beets © watercolor reprinted with permission by Barbara Benda Nagle of Mourning Dove Studios, Moorhead, MN. www.barbarabendanagle.com