It’s time for summer beets!! Whether you love ’em or hate ’em, or maybe just haven’t met the right preparation yet, we’re going to try to find something for everyone here!
To me, beets are sweet and rich, iron-y in the best way, like a rare steak. My favorite way to enjoy them is roasted with a little onion and olive oil, in foil over the grill or on a sheet pan in the oven. Be sure to cut them into pieces that are no more than 1/2″ thick, and that the pieces are as uniform as you can, so that they cook evenly. I like to toss the cut beets in a bowl with olive oil, so that they’re all coated, then dump on sheet pan and sprinkle liberally with salt and pepper.
Now, I can’t do a post on beets without throwing you a little curve ball… beet juice. (that’s beet on the left)
You have questions? I have a few answers.
Q: What do you do with beet juice?
A: Drink it! Diluted, of course (it’s quite intense). I like it with apple cider or just water. Or use in your beet pickling!
Q: What do you do with the pulp?
A: Add to carrot cake or quickbreads, or freeze for use later.
Wms Sonoma: https://www.williams-sonoma.com/recipe/pickled-beets.html
Ball Blue Book: https://www.freshpreserving.com/pickled-beets—ball-auto-canner-recipes-br1448.html
Lacinato Kale and Mint Salad with Spicy Peanut Dressing
aka “dinosaur” kale, pictured at left. It’s my favorite — it’s almost blue, it’s so dark green, and its flat-ness means it’s easy to chop finely or slice into ribbons, or shred in your food processor until it’s unrecognizable and hide-able. Not that I would do that.
The best thing about kale salads like this is that they’ll keep a few days, as the kale takes longer to break down than lettuces. The dressing on this particular salad is close to a sesame noodle dressing, but a bit more tangy than nutty. This may actually be a good dressing to mix up and have on hand, just in case you get a hankering for the salad. [more kale recipes from Food52]
Green Falafel Bowl
Make your own falafel patties with fresh, local greens, eggs, garlic, breadcrumbs, and hard cheese. Make ahead, even, then toss in a bowl with your favorite raw or roasted vegetables, rice or grain (and a swish of that gorgeous beet hummus pictured in the recipe!), for a meal you can repeat through the week. [more kale recipes from 101 Cookbooks]
Potato and Kale Knish
I am so making up a batch or three of these to put in my freezer for winter. Potato and leek, potato and kale, sweet potato, spinach, maybe even some roasted beet and cabbage.
“as excellent as you would expect from carbs, wrapped in more carbs, brushed with egg, baked until flaky outside and steamy inside and filling enough to require the cancellation of all other meals for the remainder of the day.”
That, my friends, is the knish of my dreams. [more kale recipes from Smitten Kitchen]
The Greenest Green Smoothie
Full of kale, but also banana and matcha and almond milk, which somehow magically cancels out all kale bitterness.
This recipe also includes pineapple, almond butter, and a bit of ginger — all of which are a bit too complicated, for me.
When I have kale growing in the garden, I use the smallest, newest leaves for smoothies, as they’re the most tender. [more kale recipes from Bon Appetit]
This time last year, we were making smoothies and buddha bowls, and generally enjoying lots of greens! We also had a guest post on garlic scapes — those adorable curly shoots which should be at the market this week or next.
This week at the market, we’re looking forward to some first-of-the-season brassicas: broccoli and kale!! plus lots more greens and herbs! Here are some recipes to help you make use of all the greens that are available this time of year.
Grilled broccoli and arugula salad – from Bon Appetit; the dressing on this looks AMAZING, like a summery caesar:
Purée anchovy, garlic, mayonnaise, buttermilk, chervil, tarragon, chives, lemon juice, and mustard in a blender until smooth; season dressing with salt.
Heads-up: there’s local buttermilk at Green Top Grocery!
Farmer’s Market Quinoa Salad – also from Bon Appetit, from a whole series on broccoli. And if you’re looking for pea shoots to complete the salad, Finding Eminence farms grows microgreens and pea shoots, and they’re available at Green Top!
The quick and global version of “what to do with kale” is this: cold: add to any salad for texture and/or flavor; just chop fine or massage the dressing into the leaves. hot: add to stir-fries or soups, or just sautee to add to a bowl of mixed meat/veg/salads. Use just a bit of oil/fat, and low, gentle heat until it softens a bit.
This is also a good time of year for frittatas! Add any vegetables you like, some of those gorgeous local eggs, and enjoy!