Hello all and Happy Friday! We have some amazing items on the menus for next week. Kiwis and parsnips will be back, as well as delicious leeks and squash! We are particularly excited for two delicious, and often underrated, vegetables: beets and collard greens. Let’s find out why.
Next week’s beets will not only be delicious and nutritious, they will be gorgeous. Always beautiful, the purple and gold beets are sure to be a treat! Beets are great in so many ways. They’re wildly healthy. Their rich color comes from the pigment betacyanin, which also happens to be powerful cancer-fighting agent. Several studies suggest that beets are particularly helpful in preventing and fighting colon cancer; beet juice also appears to inhibit mutations in stomach cancer. They protect against inflammation (associated with heart disease, diabetes, depression, allergies, and more), and they help fight birth defects. They are chock full o’ health boosting vitamins A and C, iron, and other minerals, carotenoids, and dietary fiber. It is a natural cleanser that can help clean toxins from your body. Some claim they can even help with non-worrisome stuff, like dandruff.
To eat a beet you have to get rid of the paper-thin skin first. You can peel it off while it’s raw (getting your fingers stained scarlet in the process; beets stain everything, even your innards). Or you can roast the beets gently until they’re succulently tender, then rub the skins off with a paper towel.
Here are five of our favorite ways to eat beets.
- Raw! – Yes, beets are quite good raw. Slice them up and serve them with asprinkle of chile and lemon. Delicious.
- Roasted with goat cheese. – The classic, all-time favorite preparation. Roast beets until they are tender and juicy, then eat them with some spicy greens and piquant goat cheese. Add some hazelnuts and you’re in heaven.
- In a salad. – Beets make a good complement to other salad staples. Try them tossed with barley and feta in a grain salad, or with onions and horseradish cream in an elegant composed dinner salad.
- Pickled! – Pickled beets are just marvelous. The tangy vinegar and sweetness complements beets’ earth undernotes. Try a quick batch of refrigerator beet pickes.
- As dessert. – Beets and their smoky, earthy sweetness are the secret ingredient in some fabulous desserts, such as red velvet cake!
As for our other very versatile produce spotlight item, have you tried collard greens? They are delicious! A member of the kale family, collard greens feature dark green leaves and tough stems. Because of their tough texture, collard greens benefit from slow, moist heat cooking techniques such as braising.
A traditional recipe for collard greens involves simmering the collards with a ham hock, or other smoked, cured pork products like bacon, and served with corn bread.
Other techniques for cooking collard greens include sautéing, baking in casseroles or simmering in soups and stews.
What are you most looking forward to? Share your favorites and recipes on our Facebook page!