Winter Squash


Beets are believed to be native to southern Europe and North Africa. They did not become popular until the 1800s. Beets were used frequently in ancient Greece and Rome.

Beets come in three ways: the beet-crop thinnings, little ruby-green leaves with tiny beet roots; the fully-grown beet root; and the beet greens. All are used in cooking and salads.


Cooking Tips

While beets are often only used these days for salads and pickles, they are one of the most delicious vegetables to heat hot, as an important soup ingredient or combined with other root or green vegetables. Because of their sweetness, they blend well with fruit like apples, oranges, or lemons.

Beets are commonly boiled, but their flavor is better if they are baked. To boil beets, cut off the leaves, right above the beet itself, and wash the beets. Do not cut into or scratch the beets or their roots or the juice will run out during cooking and leave the beets pale. Put into boiling salted water. Cover and simmer gently until tender. Small beets will take 1 to 1 1/2 hours. Take from the water, cut off the roots, and rub off the skin and fibers.

To bake beets, cut off the leaves and wash thoroughly without damage. Put into a baking tin, and bake at 350 degrees F for 1 1/2 to 2 hours or until tender. Rub off the skin, and cut off the roots

Chives and caraway are the best herbs to enhance the flavor of beets. Nutritionally, beets are not a major source of vitamins or minerals. Beet greens are very similar to swiss chard, are high in vitamins A and C, and have a high mineral content.

Storage Suggestions

Raw beets without leaves will store for a month or more at about 40 degrees F in high humidity. To raise humidity, store them in a plastic zip lock bag.


Beets in Sour Cream

1 lb. cooked beets, cut into matchsticks
1/3 cups sour cream
3 Tbsp chopped chives
1 Tbsp dill weed
1/4 tsp salt
Lettuce leaves
Slivered almonds

Gently mix beet, herbs, salt and sour cream. Place each serving on a cup of lettuce leaves and sprinkle with slivered almonds.

Dutch Salad

1 tsp dark mustard
1/2 cup dill pickle relish
1/8 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp dried dill
3 Tbsp rosemary vinegar
3 Tbsp sesame oil
1 cup cooked diced beets
1 cup cooked diced potatoes
1/4 cup sliced green onions
1 apple, diced
2 hard-cooked eggs, diced
1/2 cup diced Gouda, Edam or Muenster cheese

Whisk the mustard, pickles, salt, vinegar, and oil together in a mixing bowl. Add the rest of the ingredients and fold together.

Beet and Carrot Salad I

4 medium beets, peeled and shredded
1 lb. shredded carrots
1/4 cup orange juice
2 Tbsp oil
1 Tbsp grated ginger root
2 Tbsp apple juice
2 tsp honey
2 Tbsp chopped Vidalia onions
A dash freshly grated nutmeg

Combine all ingredients. Best if chilled overnight.

Beet and Carrot Salad II

4 medium beets, peeled and shredded
1 lb. shredded carrots
4 Tbsp olive oil
1 1/2 Tbsp raw apple cider vinegar
1 Tbsp raw honey
1 Tbsp chopped Vidalia onions
salt and pepper
1 Tbsp dill weed
1 finely mince garlic clove

Combine all ingredients. Best if chilled overnight.

Beet Green Salad

1 lb. cleaned beet greens
1 bunch watercress chopped
1/2 cup chopped onion
2 cloves of garlic crushed
1/4 cup finely sliced celery
1 tsp chopped fresh dill, marjoram or savory
1/4 cup lemon juice
2 Tbsp raw apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup olive oil

Remove the tough stems and tear leaves into pieces. Combine all ingredients.

Beet Greens

1 lb. cleaned beet greens
3 cloves of garlic
1 yellow onion
2 Tbsp sesame oil
2 Tbsp olive oil
2 Tbsp tamari sauce
1/2 Tbsp grill seasoning

Remove the stems and thoroughly wash beet leaves. Let stand in cold water. Chop garlic, beet stems and onion. Sauté in sesame and olive oil in a large pan over medium high heat for 2 minutes until onion is translucent but not yet browned. Add wet beet leaves. Sprinkle with tamari sauce and grill seasoning. Cover. Let simmer over low heat for 8 to 10 minutes. Serves two.


Honey Mustard Beets

After you have the beets cooked, this recipe is very fast. It is basically salt & pepper, vinegar & oil, honey & mustard. By varing the type of vinegar, oil and mustard, you can create very different results. These beets can add a lot of color and zing to an ordinary meat and potato meal.

1 Tbsp stone ground mustard
1 Tbsp honey
1/2 tsp salt
fresh ground pepper
1 Tbsp raw apple cider vinegar
2 Tbsp olive oil
6 medium beets, cooked & sliced
1 green onion, sliced thin

Combine the mustard, honey, salt & pepper, vinegar, and oil. Stir in the beets. Serve sprinkled with sliced green onion. This is terrific cold or hot.


Creamy Vegetable Beet Soup

1 cup chopped onion (125g)
4 garlic cloves
1 cup sliced carrots (150g)
2 cups shredded cabbage (150g)
2 large beets peeled & cubed or two 15 oz. cans of beets
4 cups of water
2 bay leaves
1 1/2 Tbsp grill seasoning

2 Tbsp tamari
1/2 cup plain yogurt
2 Tbsp almond butter or tahini

1/4 cup of chopped sun dried tomatoes or 1 chopped tomato

Sesame seeds or sliced almonds

Combine all of the first group of ingredients in a slow cooker. If you want a mild sweet taste for the onions and garlic, sauté them in a tablespoon of olive oil until soft and translucent before placing in the cooker. Cook on low for 6 to 8 hours or 4 hours on high. Remove the bay leaves. Add the yogurt and almond butter and process with a stick blender. The consistency should be smooth with some chunks left for texture. Add the tomato. Serve hot or cold with a dollap of yogurt and a sprinkle of almonds or sesame seeds, depending on whether you used the almond butter or sesame tahini. Instead of cooking for hours in the slow cooker, this can be simmered on top of the stove for about an hour. You can start with either cooked or raw beets.

Beets with Walnut Vinaigrette

1 lb. cooked sliced beets
1 Tbsp sherry vinegar
2 tsp balsamic vinegar
1/2 tsp salt
1 Tbsp walnut oil
4 Tbsp olive oil
3 Tbsp chopped flat leaf parsley
1/8 tsp freshly ground pepper

Combine all ingredients.

Marinated Beets

6 medium cooked beets
1 small Spanish onion, sliced
8 sprigs of parsley, chopped
1/2 cup white wine vinegar
1/4 cup fresh ground pepper
2 bay leaves
8 peppercorns
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup lemon juice
1 Tbsp raw honey

Combine all ingredients and refrigerate at least 2 hours. Serve with salad, cottage cheese or sour cream. Keeps for several days in an air tight jar, refrigerated.

Beet and Carrot Cake

1 cup whole wheat pastry flour (130g)
1 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp baking soda

1/2 cup brown sugar (100g)
1/2 cup white sugar (100g)
1/2 cup oil (100g)
2 eggs
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon

1/2 cup grated carrots (75g)
1/2 cup grated beets (75g) either raw or cooked
8 oz crushed pineapple drained
1/4 cup chopped walnuts

Preheat the oven to 350. Grease either a 9x5 loaf pan, a 9x9 baking pan, or a muffin pan. In a small bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, and baking soda. Place the sugars, oil, eggs, salt, and cinnamon in a large bowl. Mix well to combine. Add the flour mixture, the carrots, beets, pineapple, and walnuts. Stir gently until thoroughly mixed. Place the batter in the prepared pan and bake: 50 minutes for the loaf pan, 40 minutes for the 9x9 pan and 25 minutes for the muffin pan. The cake is done when a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.