Friday, September 30, 2011

Roasted Balsamic Beets

In the spirit of fall, I am using the fresh produce that is available. The stores and markets here are full of it! The big sale that is happening at our closest grocery store is for huge 10 pound bags of onions, potatoes, and beets! My mom loves pickled beets, and that's about the only way we ate them when I was growing up. I was never a fan. (Sorry mom!) It wasn't until a year ago when my Naturopath told me how good they are for detoxing your liver that I tried to eat beets again. I usually roast them and just eat them plain with some salt and pepper. Not anymore! My recipe for Roasted Balsamic Beets has become a house favourite. Even my husband, who isn't fond of beets, enjoys them. Oh, and don't worry, my mom is a big fan of these too! Enjoy!

Roasted Balsamic Beets

These have a vinegar flavour to them, but because they are roasted, and the vinegar is balsamic, the flavour is more mellow and sweeter than pickled beets.

5 medium/medium-large beets, and their greens (optional, see note below) 
5 cloves of garlic
2 medium onions, in eight pieces
1 tbsp of herbes de provence
3 tbsps of olive oil, or oil of choice
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
Salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 425 F/218 C. Scrub your beets to remove any sand or dirt. Slice beets in rounds, preferably no more than 2-3cm/0.8-1.2" thick. Dice garlic and slice onion into about eight wedges. Place sliced beets, garlic and onion in a wide roasting pan or casserole dish that has a lid. Add herbs, oil, vinegar, pinch of salt, and pepper. Roast with lid for about 30-45 minutes, or until beets are tender and vinegar has caramelized a bit.  Make sure you stir the beets every once-in-a-while during cooking so that all sides of the beets become covered by vinegar. Yields enough for 4-6 people.


- If you have beets available to you that still have their greens attached, you can add them, along with the stems, to the roasting pan. Just wash and dry them, and slice into smallish pieces.


- If you are allergic to onions or garlic, simply omit them from the recipe.

- If you are allergic to any of the herbs mentioned, try making your own combination of rosemary, marjoram, savory, basil, lavender, and sage, or make your own blend.

- If you are allergic to grapes or balsamic vinegar try substituting another vinegar. Balsamic vinegar is quite sweet and caramelizes - if you are using another vinegar, you may want to consider adding a small amount of sweetener like molasses or honey to achieve a similar result.


- If your beets are tender but the vinegar has not caramelized as much as you would like, just cook them for a little longer. The beets should not dissintegrate until they are very overcooked.

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