Posts Tagged ‘beets’

Risotto with Baked Golden Beets

I figured it’s time to get back to posting about food now and then. This weekend at our farmer’s market, I was able to pick up a few golden beets, and made a delicious risotto (if I may say so). I won’t go into the Risotto part of the recipe other than to say I didn’t do anything special, just cooked the arborio rice with sautéed onion and vegetable broth until it was done.

For the risotto part, I chopped up the beet tops and some mushrooms, then sautéed them in olive oil until the mushrooms were browned and the beet tops just lightly wilted. I added a bit to tomato sauce to the risotto right before adding the sautéed greens, and mixed it all together with a liberal amount of Parmesan or Romano cheese.

What really made the meal good, though were the baked beets. It took about as long to bake them at 400 as it took to make the risotto. I quartered them, added olive oil and cut up part of rutabaga that I had left in the fridge, then mixed with the oil and a bit of salt until they were coated, and baked until they were tender. The juices of both root vegetables were trapped inside by the baked-on olive oils. Both the beets and the rutabaga were sweet, and more flavorful than if I made them on the stove. The combination with the risotto was excellent. The golden beets had a wonderful color — this would probably work with red beets, too, but the beet flavor might be stronger. So if you’re looking for something new to try with beets or a new ingredient to have with risotto, give this a try.

Valentine Variation (Ginger Beets)

Ginger Beets and Soba Noodles This evening for Valentine’s Day, I decided to reprise the Ginger Beets recipe with a few slight variations. Mainly, I added rutabaga, chard, cilantro, and broccoli. Most of this came from our local farmer — only the broccoli was from the store. Mushroom soy sauce helps the sauce, since it is so dark. And I added peanut butter to make the sauce a little richer. Siracha sauce helps spice it up.

And what would Valentine’s day be without chocolate? We had a truffle from our favorite chocolatier in Spirit Lake, Iowa, Goodies. I discovered them one year when trying to get some good chocolate to my mother in time for the holiday. We’ve been addicted ever since, so it’s fortunate that Valentine’s day comes but once a year (and that it falls in the winter months, when we can have it shipped without dry ice and overnight mail!).

Ginger Beets and Soba Noodles

Here’s a Valentine’s Day recipe to try, if you dare. I made it the other night for fun and out of desperation, not having gotten to the store yet for supplies–but Kim and Aidan had been to the Enlow’s (formerly organic) farm. (Mississippi changed it’s regulations on how to be organically certified, so our only local grower who was certified, can now no longer afford to maintain it, even though he hasn’t changed his practices.)

Ingredients:
canola oil or other stir-fry oil
2 small red beets and tops
1 large carrot (or 2 smaller ones)
a few leaves of kale
tofu
one small onion
garlic
ginger
1 tbs sugar
curry, garam massala
soy sauce and lemon juice
siracha sauce
soba noodles (Japanese buckwheat noodles)

Sauté the onion, garlic, and ginger in a wok, then add sugar, carrots, and beets, cut into small pieces. Saute a few minutes, then add spices, tofu, lemon juice and soy sauce. Add beet tops and kale. Add other vegetables, if you wish. Add siracha sauce to taste (it’s hot).

Meanwhile, start water to boil and cook soba noodles according to directions. When finished, serve with stir-fry over noodles. Due to the beets, everything will be a deep red color, except the kale and beet tops, which remain green. Since I only used a couple relatively small beets, the beet taste wasn’t too strong. The ginger and curry spiced it up a little. Siracha sauce added to the heat (though cayenne or other hot pepper would do as well).

We enjoyed it, though it was definitely a unique experience. The flavors were good, and the red/pink color of the dish was a little much, which is why I suggest it for Valentine’s Day.