52 Foods Week One: Beets

I went to the Farmers’ Market yesterday to find a candidate for the first week of Fifty Two Foods. Being winter and a Wednesday, the market did not have a lot of vendors with fresh produce. After a quick survey, I settled on beets for this week.

I bought one bunch of organic beets from Fiddler’s Green Farm out of Brooks, CA.

A Bunch of Beets

I was asked to bring a salad to some friends’ home for a dinner, so I also grabbed some organic salad greens.

My plan was to cook the beets, and toss them in the salad with some goat cheese. I really like roasted beets, but sometimes I find the denseness of their flavor and the sweetness a bit overwhelming. I wanted to do something that would cut the richness a bit, and decided to salt roast them, figuring that the salt would balance the sweetness.

After washing the beets and slicing the ends off them. I poured a little pillow of kosher salt onto foil squares. I positioned each beet on the salt, then pulled the foil edges up to make a sort of sack. Then I poured more salt in each sack to cover about 3/4 of the beet.

Cover it Up

I finished wrapping the beets in the foil, and shook each one upside down a bit to distribute the salt. They sounded like little maracas.

I baked the beets for 35 minutes at 350ºF. Upon removing them from the oven, I unwrapped the top of the foil to let them cool a bit. The salt absorbed the beet juice, and had formed a sort of crust that broke away when the foil was opened.

Opening the Foil

Once the beets were cool enough to handle, I peeled them and sliced them for the salad. They tasted lightly salted with some of the sweetness cut, just like I had hoped. I finished the salad with a some crumbled goat cheese and a dijon-balsamic vinaigrette.

Salad is Served

You can view more photos here.