Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Beets in Citrus Sauce


We love vegetables and beets are no exception. I think some people are put off by their gaudy magenta hue, but even as a kid, I loved that color and felt very attracted to beets. Also, it is hard to imagine by looking at the hard, crunchy, gnarly, and often hairy exterior of a beet that it could ever cook into a vegetable so sweet and buttery textured.   

Beets are a nutritional power-house; another reason to love them.  They can be juiced, grated raw as a topping for salads, oven roasted, grilled, or steamed, all with delicious results.

I have made Beets in Citrus Sauce many times over the years. The addition of the lemon and orange really brighten the flavor, the small amount of sugar takes away the earthy flavor some people find objectionable. And the cloves add a distinctly fall flavor.

Beets in Citrus Sauce
(adapted from The Vegetarian Epicure by Anna Thomas)
1 1/2 to 2 lb. young beets
1 1/4 cups liquid from beets
1 lemon
1 Tbsp. orange peel, freshly grated
2 Tbsp. sugar
1/2 tsp. ground cloves
2 Tbsp. frozen orange juice concentrate
1 1/2 Tbsp cornstarch
1 Tbsp. butter

Cook the beets whole, in simmering water, until just tender. Drain, reserving liquid, peel and slice thin. Pour liquid from the beets into a pot, add the grated peel and the juice of 1 lemon, the grated orange peel, sugar, salt, cloves, and the frozen orange juice concentrate. Dissolve the cornstarch in just enough water to make a smooth paste and add that also.  Beat the mixture lightly with a whisk and cook until it becomes clear.

Add the sliced beets and the butter, heat it through, correct the seasoning, and serve very hot.


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