Friday, July 24, 2009

Golden Beets: farmer's market treasure

The lady I'm staying with stopped at the Fairfax, VA farmer's market Wednesday and picked up these delicious golden beets.

Okay, so this isn't a picture of the exact beets I had... we devoured them before the thought of taking a picture entered my mind. What can I say, I think with my stomach sometimes. But these look just like 'em.

Anyhoo, I wanna state for the record that I just recently developed the taste for beets.
Okay, maybe I've had the taste for them, but I just recently allowed myself to actually ADMIT that I like beets. (I had to have at least ONE vegetable I didn't like!)
I used many of the usual reasons for not liking them; they taste like dirt, they stain, they're boring, blah, blah, blah.
But, last semester while creating a self portrait of myself made entirely of food, (will post that later) I bought a can of beets to use in the masterpiece- thinking that I should use things I wouldn't mind throwing away afterward. While working on the artwork, I just happened to try a nibble. Much to my surprise, I actually had another. And maybe a couple more... After all these years of hating beets, had I really just enjoyed them? And out of a can at that?

So my initial thought when Davi brought home the fresh beets was, "oh... beets... eh, I think I'll pass."
Then I remembered! Hey! I like beets now!
We were on a time crunch that night, so just sliced one up raw and threw it in our dinner salad. It was earthy, slightly sweet and had a nice crisp crunch to it. Best of all, it didn't stain my hands like red beets do!!

The next night, also using them raw, I made a beet salad w/ heirloom tomatoes and mozzarella (was going to use feta, but we were out). Here is an approximation of what I did:

3 small golden beets, thinly sliced
1 med. heirloom tomato (one I used was a Cherokee purple)
1/2 c. cubed mozzarella
1/3 c. thinly sliced purple onion
1 Tbsp. fresh parsley, chopped
1 tsp fresh lemon thyme, chopped
1 Tbsp lemon juice
3 Tbsp white wine vinegar
1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp ground mustard seed
salt & fresh ground pepper

Toss all ingredients except mozzarella together and let meld for a while, then add mozzarella right before serving. (If you put it in too early, the vinegars and acids will start to break it down making it all gooey.)

Don't know if anyone is growing these back in Texas, but I will definitely be keeping an eye out for them at my local farmer's market!

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