Tasty Bite!
An edible fall flower, Hollyhock, with stamen removed and filled with: Saffron Risotto, Butternut Squash, topped with Sprouted Black Lentils and Micro Leeks

Thursday, December 31, 2009

Love Beets All!

You have heard of Dinosaur Kale?
I'm calling these Elephant Beets!

The Fresh Connect beets are gorgeous. I want to do a painting of them! But, there are hungry people to be fed and one of the first things to eat in the Fresh Connect Box will be the beet tops! They are most likely to wilt later in the week and become soup stock. So, I try to get to them first. Plus I love sautéed and/or wilted beet tops so-much, I could eat them every day!

Beets, also known as beetroot, are high in potassium, folacin, and fiber, yet low in calories. Their edible leaves offer protein, calcium, fiber, beta-carotene, vitamins A and C, and some B vitamins. They're known in the arena of natural healing for their ability to purify the blood and the liver.

Celebrate beets by eating the beet tops! They are highly nutritious. Add them to green smoothies, save the small ones to mix with other salad greens, slice and add to raw and cooked soups, sauté’s and loafs. Use in fermented chim chees and krauts.

Leave the beets in tact until you are ready to use them. (Another reason to eat them first: Elephants tend to be huge and take up much needed fridge space.)

Val's Favorite Beet Top Recipe

(Not 100% Raw)

Sauté them with Onion & Garlic

Get Ready:

Make a bunch. They are great leftover!

Make a workspace:

Clear sink, cutting board, knife, strainer, large stainless steal skillet or pan with wide surface area, wooden spatula, and camera. Check!

When ready, cut off the tops, leaving at least 1 inch of stem attached to the bulb, place the bulbs in a waxed paper bag or brown paper lunch sack to keep the dirt out of the produce bin in your fridge. Leave the dirt on the bulbs. It's good for them! I'm serious. Beets, carrots, potatoes continue to draw nutrients form the soil while in storage. Celebrate the dirt! (You'll need the bulbs for juicing later in the weekend!) Wash the tops in clean source water and drain.

Separate the stems from the leaves. Chop the stems. You will add the stems with the garlic and onion to the pan first. Then, add the more tender leaves last. Chiffonade the leaves. (Save the small ones to mix with other salad greens

Gather organic ingredients:

  • A grip of beet tops (A "grip" is however many you have an/or however many you can carry. That way, you've always got a grip!)
  • 2-3 cloves of garlic
  • 1/2 a large white onion (refrigerated for an hour, or more, to avoid onion-gas-tears)
  • 1/2 tsp living sea salt
  • 1 tsp to 1 TBS of clover honey (to taste)
  • Juice of one orange plus 1/2 a lemon (Or substitute a TBS of raw apple-cider vinegar mixed with 1/4 cup clean-source water)
  • Ground Black Pepper
  • Optional Garnish: 1/2 cup sprouted Sicilian almonds, soaked in inland seawater, dehydrated until crunchy (I make them in batches and store them in glass jars to keep on hand.)


1. Chop onion, sprinkle with sea salt

2. Sweat the onion first in a hot pan, on lowest of low heat, covered until clear. Add honey, stir, and a few tablespoons of water if needed. The amount of water will depend on the type of cookware you are using and the temp of your stove. So, don't get stuck on the phone in the middle of this step.

3. Chop the beat stems and garlic, add them to the onions, and continue to sweat on low heat, covered. Stir a few times.

4. Add chiffonade of beet leaves last. They should be slightly damp with clean-source water. Stir them into the onions, stems and garlic. Add fruit juice or vinegar when bottom of pan is sticky or leaves start to get wilted or a little dry, to preference. I know I'm close when the onions have turned bright pink.

5. Adjust seasoning, salt, pepper, and honey. Garnish with almonds very last so they stay white.

5 1/2. Hide it from everyone so you can eat it all! Just kidding. Sort of.

6. Actually, I shared and served the beet tops three ways:

  • (Not pictured) As a warm topping over white Quinoa with a large side salad, New Year's Eve.
  • (Pictured below left) Cold as a salad topping. They "jell" in the ridge overnight and the colors intensify. The almonds turn bright pink! I topped it with more white almonds, too.)
  • (Pictured below right) Warm, as a base for the Vegan Hopin' John on New Years Day. I topped it with chopped white onion.

Store left-overs refrigerated, if you have any! The almonds will turn pink too. It's pretty. But, you can also garnish with more white almonds, if you prefer.