Roasted Beets

I do love beets – at the same time sweet and savory. Dark, dark red so you know they’re packed with antioxidants and vitamins. And they come with bonus greens – you can eat the tops too, you know.

Today, a simple dinner: tossed mixed greens with roasted beets and heirloom tomatoes. The farm share had quite a nice greens mix, including plenty of spicy arugula – my favorite. You have not HAD arugula until you eat it fresh. It has a bite. A taste unlike any other.  I chopped the beets into small cubes, partly to cook faster, but also so they would end up like little beet croutons. While the beets roasted on a pan in a 400 degree oven (drizzle of olive oil, shake of salt and grind of pepper)  I tossed the mixed greens, a sliced heirloom tomato (from Whole Foods – they named the local farm from which it came, and a relative steal at $2.99/ lb) and olives I found in the fridge with a drizzle of good olive oil and a few splashes of decent balsamic. Topped it with a shake of fancy pink salt a friend gave us and then topped with the beet croutons when they were done, after about 20 minutes. So simple, but so fresh and delicious. (So as not to give the impression that we don’t eat heartily, my husband donated a leftover roast beef sandwich from work which we shared to round out the meal. The quinoa I made earlier will have to wait for another meal.)

Now comes creative meal planning. I have found that you need to be purposeful in how you plan to cook and eat the farm share goodies so that you don’t let anything go to waste. We have lots of greens – including beet and turnip tops. A quick hint is to chop the tops off when you get your beets, turnips, radishes, and any other root veg, because the large leafy greens will suck moisture out of the veg itself. Yesterday I chopped the tops, and then washed and stored them as I would any other greens. They’ll be good chopped and saute-ed with a clove of green garlic tomorrow in a frittata. That will keep me going through the morning.

We have some leftover free-range chicken (not as local as I’d like – but I’m searching for a source) to re-purpose with the quinoa, kale and garlic tomorrow evening. I’ll top that with a mystery green herb sauce I found in an unmarked container in the freezer yesterday. Hmmm…. a farm share concoction from last fall? Note to self: label your food.


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