One of the things we are so fortunate to experience when participating with a CSA is being exposed to new things. This week, let’s look at beets!
You will receive Red Beets, or Badger Flame Beets or both! Badger Flames are special; they have been specially cultivated by collaborating Chef’s & Farmers to develop & spotlight the sweetness, while removing the earthy flavor that typically comes through in beets: https://www.row7seeds.com/products/badger-flame-beet?_pos=3&_sid=3c588981a&_ss=r
I can’t say enough about beets – they are rather fascinating. They are so beautiful… pigmentation is made from them. Most of the world’s common sugar, unless it specifically lists cane, comes from sugar beets! They can be used in just about everything. I have made a reduction with beet juice & put in under a ribeye steak, topped with blue cheese butter…. the possibilities are endless!
You will find the best way in which to prepare them kind of depends on the recipe. Generally speaking, steaming or roasted in the oven is the easiest & most common. Depending on the size of the beet you are preparing,
30-40 minutes is the average cook time. They are ready when they are soft & tender, easily pierced with a fork or toothpick.
When they are cooked & cool enough to handle, peel them by using the backside of a spoon. I find that using a knife takes away too much of the edible beet, & using a spoon allows you to keep the shape of the beet.
If you really love beets, try adding them to anything & everything! Literally.
Summer Beet Panzanella
Uses from Broad Wing Farm Share(s): Beets, Tomatoes, Cucumbers, Italian Sweet Peppers, Lion:> Mesclun
Shopping List: Loaf of your favorite Rye Bread, Champagne or White Wine Vinegar,
8 oz Fresh Mozzarella, Bunched Basil, Bunched Flat Leaf Parsley, medium shallot, bulb garlic, Fox:> optional salad mix
Special Note: This recipe will make one LARGE salad. I actually really enjoy Panzanella the day after it’s been made! If you prefer a smaller salad, cut your base ingredient quantities in half.
1 loaf Rye Bread | cut into large cubes or torn into chunks. Toast in the oven**.All beets from share | Trim greens & set greens aside. Steam the beets, & peel (as detailed in this week’s special notes). Cut into bite sized pieces. All tomatoes from share | small tomatoes cut in half; large tomatoes cut into large cubesAll cucumbers from share | peeled, seeds removed & discarded, cut into large chunks1-2 Italian Sweet Peppers | roasted (see instructions)1 medium shallot | sliced thin8 oz fresh Mozzarella | Cut into cubes1/3 cup Champagne (or white wine) Vinegar | 1/3 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil |2 cloves garlic | chopped fine½ bunch fresh basil | chopped3 tbsp fresh parsley | choppedSalt & Pepper |
**Bread can be prepared the night before by cutting into cubes or tearing into chunks & leaving out on a baking sheet overnight. Or you can toast in the oven. Bread needs to be like a crouton to soak up all the vegetable goodness!
Roast Peppers: If you have a gas stove top, or if not, roast in 350-400-degree oven. Either way the process is the same. Char the skins of the peppers until evenly blackened. Remove peppers from heat & place in a container with a tight lid or Ziplock bag. Allow to cool.
Prepare Beet Greens: Cut off stems – you can save them to mix in with your next cooked veggie mix, if you like! Cut or tare the greens into bite sized pieces.
Make dressing: Whisk vinegar, olive oil, chopped garlic, salt & pepper. Set aside.
When the peppers have cooled, remove from container or bag & remove the black skins. Pull off the stems & remove seeds. If you are having trouble removing everything with your hands, give the peppers a quick rinse! Pat dry & chop the peppers into bite sized pieces.
Put all ingredients in a bowl, reserving the Mesclun or salad green mix. Toss with the dressing & mix in the herbs. Allow to stand… this salad gets better with time, so prepare ahead to your liking!
When ready to serve, put a layer of mesclun or optional salad greens down on a plate or bowl 1st, then top off with the mix! This is a really pretty salad, great photo opportunity, don’t be shy to share to Broad Wing’s Instagram!
Crispy Beet Snacks
Uses from Broad Wing Farm Share: Beets
Shopping List: Kosher Salt, Coconut Oil
Special Equipment: A super-duper sharp knife
All beets from share |Kosher Salt | Coconut Oil | 2 tbsp (or more) warmed to liquifyDirections
Remove beet greens & save them for future salads or sautéing.
Trim the root & the top. Peel the beets with a sharp vegetable peeler. (This will take time & hand muscles, but worth the patience!) Discard peels & trimmings.
With a very sharp knife, slice the beets as thin as you can. Work slowly & carefully! They will try to roll away from you; you don’t want to cut yourself when this happens.
Lay the slices out in one layer on paper towels or clean kitchen towels. Sprinkle GENEROUSLY with Kosher salt & allow to sit for 20 minutes.
With dry towels, pat off the moisture that has collected on the surface of the slices. Flip beets over & repeat process. If your towels are soaked, replace before repeating.
Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Set on convection if you have the option.
Put beet slices in a large bowl & toss in warmed coconut oil, making sure the beets are thoroughly coated.
Line baking sheets with parchment & put slices down in one layer; edges shouldn’t touch. Sprinkle lightly with more salt & put in the oven. After 10 minutes, rotate the baking sheet. Bake for 20 minutes, then remove from oven & flip slices over. Sprinkle with salt again if you like, & bake the 2nd side in the same manner, rotating baking sheet after 10 minutes. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until crispy & brown around the edges.
Pro-Tip: Different sliced thickness of the beets means some might cook faster than others. If you find some of your slices aren’t as crispy, don’t be afraid to return them to the oven & bake a little longer!