I remember three instances in my life when beetroot graced the kitchen. The first was during my senior year in college and I was home from school, my Mom made Red Velvet Cake and used beet juice instead of sugar. I don’t recall what happened to the beet but I can tell you what happened to the cake. The second was nearly three years ago when I made borscht, a vegetable soup popular in Eastern Europe featuring beetroot as its star ingredient. The third and most recent is when I made beetroot salad just two days ago.
When we food shop, I unfailingly make the point to ask Ryan if he has any vegetable yearnings—this is a routine for us. He chooses the vegetable(s) of his liking, or else I would choose one he has never had before. I’m not a stranger to many types of vegetables and fruits, thanks to parents who exposed us, that is my sisters and me, to a near-vegetarian diet the moment we progressed to eating solids.
Normally, Ryan would choose cabbage, broccoli, Brussels sprout, or baby bok choy. He deviates without my prompting on occasion, and when he does, it makes me extra happy. This past weekend when he exclaimed he wants beets, why I nearly jumped for joy! Except I didn’t know what else to make with beetroot other than borscht.
Thankfully, I remembered coming across a beetroot salad recipe, which I tweaked by adding six cloves of garlic because the original one was rather plain. What I love about this recipe is that it included the leaves and stems. Almost nothing goes to waste.
Beetroot, however many you want
Water, enough to cover the beetroot(s)
Beetroot leaves and stems
Garlic cloves, however many you want
Extra virgin olive oil, or melted butter
Salt and pepper to taste
Cook the beetroot(s) in boiling salted water for 30-45 minutes or until tender.
Take out the beetroot(s) with a slotted spoon. Allow to cool.
Wear rubber gloves, and then peel off the skin.
Boil the beet stock. Add the stems, leaves, and garlic cloves.
Let everything cook for 8 minutes or until the stems and leaves are tender.
After everything’s cooked, take them out, and place them in a salad bowl.
Thickly slice the beetroot(s) and place the slices with the leaves, stems, and garlic cloves.
Season with salt and pepper. Drizzle with olive oil or melted butter.