Borscht (beet soup), beet salad, and pickled beets are classic Ashkenazi dishes but in order to make these you need to start with simple cooked beets. I personally love beets and really love them roasted. I tend to believe that people who claim not to like beets (I’m talking to you, Mr. President) have only had the canned, rubbery, disgusting version. I used to be one of those people, then one day I stopped at my sister’s and she was eating beets for lunch. As a young adult I made a point of re-tasting foods I didn’t like as a kid because 9 times out of 10 I would discover I liked them. My sis offered me a bite of her beets and I was hooked. They were sweet, and soft but with a slight firmness, and not a rubbery bit in sight. I immediately bought some at my local farmers market, brought them home and realized I had no idea how to cook them. I threw them in the oven at what turned out to be no where near enough time, got frustrated and didn’t attempt them again for several years. By this time I had learned to text, and Gordon came to my rescue. I believe the entire response text was “350 about an hour then peel” and that pretty well sums it up. Lately I’ve fallen in love with the golden variety, that my local Whole Foods always has. They are a subtler flavor and you don’t have to deal with the red juice staining everything.
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