Monday, March 30, 2009

on roasting beets

For a long time, I thought it was a burdensome step.Why not throw them in a pot of boiling water and call it done. In France, beets are sold always pre-cooked, little wrinkled black shrinking heads piled up high on the side of limy green butter lettuces and tarragon branches. Let's say that they are not pretty like that and probably that counts a lot on their ending up ( or not)in the shopping bag and on a plate.I had never seen a beet leaf before coming to California. I wonder what they do with all the greens then...
So, I would boil my beets and make o.k salads, but I would also grate them for cold borsch with a little lemon, dill, dash of sherry vinegar and for that, boiling seemed fine.
The burden is worth it.The house smells like chocolate as beets crack their skins under the unrelenting high heat of the oven and the olive oil baste. they release their sugar that caramelizes wonderfully. The red beets are more pungent, the golden beets more subtle.A glorious salad they made with arugula, walnuts, and Point Reyes Blue cheese.

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