|In case I forget to say more about this later, this is the whole idea: cut a pickled beet slice with a tiny aspic-cutter, then add both the cut-out hearts and the outlines to a salad.|
|If I weren't such a pain in the ass about whole-grain this and that, the hearts would show up even better! Happy|
Heat the oven to 400. Place however many scrubbed but untrimmed beets you like into a lidded casserole dish that they will fit into in a nice, snug way. Add a half an inch of water, cover, and bake until the beets feel tender when you pierce them with the tip of a sharp knife. Depending on the size of your beets, this will take anywhere from 30 minutes (very small beets) to an hour and a half (enormous storage behemoths). Let the beets cool (if you cheated them, and they could use a hair extra cooking, let them cool in their lidded casserole, where they'll continue to steam a bit), then slice off their tops and rub the skins off under cold running water. Slice or cube them.
Makes 1 1/2 quarts
Active time: 15 minutes; total time: 1 hour 30 minutes
6 medium beets, baked as above
2 cups cider vinegar
1 cup water
1 tablespoon kosher salt
1/3 cup white sugar
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon pickling spice (or a bit of allspice, cloves, bay leaf, and cinnamon)
Trim and skin the cooled beets, then slice them a quarter inch thick and put them in a large glass jar or bowl. Bring the remaining ingredients to a boil in a pot, simmer for 10 minutes, and pour through a strainer (if you used powdered spice you can skip the strainer) over the beets. Cool and store in the fridge.
Bonus Recipe: Delicious Creamy Beets
To some amount of sliced or cubed pickled beets, add a big bloop of sour cream and a large spoonful of prepared horseradish. Stir well and taste for salt and overall excitement: if it needs more oomph, a little Coleman’s mustard seems to marry well with the other flavors.
|To recap: roast them.|
|Cut them with a wee cutter.|