Beets and beet greens are very beneficial for our livers! The greens especially can help break down food by increasing the smooth flow of bile to aide digestion - so don’t throw them out! The beet (a root) itself is very high in iron and has been used as a blood tonic in many cultures. Eaten as a whole, the entire vegetable with root and leaves, it has a perfect contrast of sweet and bitter flavors. Beets are also a great remedy for constipation.
I have a love / hate relationship with beets. I want to just love them… but alas, it is not in the cards for me. At least not yet! I’m not giving up, as you can see, and neither should you if you share my dilemma. There are so many wonderful qualities to beets, my favorite being their beauty. That’s why I want to love them so. Their color is unrivaled… deep aubergine to bright clementine orange! Their shape is sensual and fits just right into the palm of your hand. You can eat them raw or cooked, drink their juice, or even dye fabric with them! They also have numerous health benefits. The best way I like to eat them is with some of their greens or some other bitter leaf to offset their sweetness, herbs, and some fat-like oil, cheese or nuts to give it depth. Beets need to be balanced. At least for me.
Here is a simple recipe that works for me and allows you to use whatever you may have on hand:
Beet & Herb Salad:
a few roasted beets, sliced into rounds or wedges (roast with a tiny drizzle of olive oil and splash of water in a covered dish at 400˚ for about 30 minutes or until a knife slides though easily. After, you can take off their skins by just rubbing them away!)
a few leaves of beet greens, roughly chopped *
red wine vinegar or sherry vinegar
handful of fresh parsley, basil, chives, or even mint leaves, roughly chopped
freshly crumbled feta or goat cheese
olive oil or walnut oil
freshly ground black pepper and sea salt
Set beets and beet greens in a small bowl, drizzle or splash a few dashes of vinegar on them and let sit for a few minutes. Toss and add herbs and cheese. Drizzle everything with oil and finish with pepper and salt to taste. Easy!
*Eat your beet greens alone, in an omelet, with dumplings, on a sandwich, in a salad etc. They are delicious sauteed with a little olive oil and GARLIC. Lots of garlic. Maybe some chili flakes, if you’re in the mood.