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Posts Tagged ‘beets’

The Beetroot Frappé is one of my favourite drinks at Fresh, and their cookbook includes a recipe. Ginger, beets, apples and carrots, blended up with nutmeg and ice. I skipped the blending part and just whisked in the nutmeg.

Beets and carrots from Grow for The Stop via Fiesta Farms. Apples from Plan B.

Also: pumpkin chia pudding is excellent folded into plain Greek yogurt and topped with maple syrup and pecans.

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I’m only a level-two juicer

I’m out of oranges and the bf is allergic to fresh apples, so I made a veg-only juice this evening. Wow, it is intense. Beet-carrot-celery-ginger, and I should have made it more carrot-heavy than I did.

I’m not new to vegetable juice, but I’ve always had it blended with fruit to sweeten and lighten the taste. This – this is hard to get down, to be honest. Which makes me feel like a wimp. But if I go back to my university years and frequent visits to Victoria’s Rebar (which, come to think of it, I’m still paying for…), I never even liked the vegetable blends – I would always choose pure fruit juices.

So am I getting tougher? How long does it take to get used to a heavy beet juice?

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Pink pancakes for brunch

I was recently given a copy of new cookbook Good to the Grain: Baking with Whole-Grain Flours by Kim Boyce. As someone who loves to bake but doesn’t love to eat tons of white flour, I was excited by the potential of trying recipes using whole grains as varied as amaranth, teff and kamut to boost the nutrition and flavour of recipes.

First up? I couldn’t resist the lure of the pink pancakes: Quinoa and Beet Pancakes, that is. It uses half a cup of pureed roasted beets for colour, flavour and a bit of a nutrition boost (plus they lessen the need for sweetener), and the flour is 1/4 whole wheat, 1/4 quinoa and 1/2 white.

The verdict? 1. They are very pink, and I love it, and I imagine they’d be really fun to make with kids, especially the ones obsessed with the colour pink. 2. You can definitely taste the beets, but as a beet-lover, I think that’s a good thing, and roasted beets are very sweet and go well with syrup and yogurt, which is how we served them. 3. I couldn’t really taste the quinoa flour, or I didn’t think I could, but I’d be interested in doing a comparison test between these and all-wheat pancakes. 4. The recipe definitely makes enough for four, and since we’re only two, I’m going to try freezing them for quick breakfasts in the future.

Oh, and I love this recipe book. For once, something on the market that’s actually got a new (and challenging) angle on cooking.

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Plan B is back to sending me tons of carrots, and I improvised this salad to help use them up. (Excuse the terrible picture, I made this when it was already dark out.)

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Mix together (all to taste):

• Grated carrots and beets
• Sunflower seeds
• Olive oil and lemon juice
• Salt and pepper
• Crushed garlic
• Chopped fresh parsley
• Chopped beet greens (optional – if your beets came with them)

This makes a delicious side dish, or you can make it a full meal – serve with a hard-boiled egg and some black bread and pickles to make it really Russian-style. You can embellish it in a number of ways, too – tonight for my dinner I tossed some with mixed greens, a chopped apple and a spoonful of sour cream.

Also, I picked the rest of my beans from the garden today. Aren’t they pretty?

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Sautéed beet greens

One of the things I love about growing beets is that you get a lot of value for the space: you eat the roots, you eat the greens. Better yet, even though beets need some space to grow (so the root can get bigger), you can plant them thicker from seed and thin them when the greens are big enough to eat.

The reddish leaves near the back of the planter are my beets.

The reddish leaves near the back of the planter are my beets.

Beets are related to chard and the greens are similar to swiss chard, so you can cook them in the same way and the same recipes. The easiest way is to sauté them. I like to do them in olive oil and garlic, then when they’re cooked, add a bit of lemon juice or balsamic vinegar, then serve. Delicious!

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sauteed

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I’ve gotten back into pasta again after discovering the yummy local stuff sold at the Green Barn Market – I buy the rotini, divide it into three zip-locs and throw it in the freezer for when I want a quick meal. But instead of doing anything fancy, I’ve been throwing together one-pot what’s-in-the-fridge meals. It’s quick and easy and all you really want in the summer.

Boiling isn’t my favourite way to cook vegetables because you lose nutrients in the water, but it’s worth the sacrifice for how easy this is.

Basically, decide on your ingredients and figure out how long each will take to cook, boil a pot of water and add ingredients from longest cooking time to shortest. Tonight, my dish consisted of (in cooking order):

• asparagus stems (Plan B)
• asparagus tips (they cook faster)
• pasta (Green Barn)
• frozen edamame (not local)
• beet greens (stems first, then leaves)*
• green onions (Plan B)

Once everything’s cooked, drain it and then mix in some sauce-like ingredients: pesto if you have it, or tomato sauce, or tonight I did a combo of cream, chevre (local, from Nancy’s Cheese), lemon juice and pepper. I topped the dish with pine nuts (also not local) and dinner was done in 10 minutes! Take that, Kraft Dinner.

* I have a ton of beets growing in the community garden – I went a little crazy planting them. I ate a couple of harvests of baby beet greens when I first thinned them, and while I was watering tonight I pulled out another beet to see how big they were getting. It was about the size of a ping-pong ball and I washed it and sliced it and ate it raw, then used the stems and leaves for dinner.

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