We all know that beets are a superfood, but why?
Here is a list of things you might not have known about beets.
The beet was initially cultivated around 2,000 BC in the Mediterranean regions, which makes it a natural fit for a heart-healthy Mediterranean diet.
When harvested, the entirety of the plant is edible, from the tips of its leaves, down to its long-pointed root.
In ancient times, the root part was not used for cooking but instead as a medicine for treating painful disorders at that time, like headaches and toothaches.
Today, beets are consumed as sugar, leafy greens, as a root vegetable, or for animal feed.
The biggest beet in the world was grown by a Dutchman. It weighed over 156 pounds.
Studies have shown that the high levels of unique antioxidants and anti-inflammatory agents found in beets contribute to a reduction in the risk of many types of cancers.
Beets have also been shown to support the detoxification process in the body. The betalin compound found in beets, which gives them their red color, helps to capture troublesome toxins and flush them out of the system via the urinary tract.
The beet and its greens are both an excellent source of folate, vitamin A and K, and a very good source of manganese, copper, and potassium.
Beets are high in fiber, which helps with satiety and regularity.
Beetroot juice is one of the richest dietary sources of antioxidants and naturally occurring nitrates. Nitrates (not to be confused with nitrites!) are compounds which improve blood flow throughout the body—including the brain, heart, and muscles.”-self.com
Wow! Don’t you love beets even more? I certainly do. We grow a lot of these gems every year and enjoy them fresh in the Fall or throughout the Winter and Summer months before the next harvest comes in.
As stated you can juice them, heat them on the stovetop, use the leaves to make beet leaf soup, or freeze them which I’m going to show you how to do right now.
How to Freeze Beets
- To begin, fill a pot with water and then place your whole beets, minus the leaves into the pot.
2. Next, turn your stovetop to medium and cook your beets until you can peel the outer layer of skin back with a knife. Remember, you’re checking one, not peeling or skinning the entire one at this time.
3. If the skin peels back nice and smooth, your beets are ready. At this point, remove them and place them in a different container or drain the water and keep them in the pot but on a separate burner to cool.
4. Once cooled, cut the ends off and peel each beet. You can discard your ends and skins in a separate container and feed them to your chicken, other animals, compost them, or throw them in the garbage.
5. Now, cube your beets or cut them into the desired size and place them in a large bowl.
6. To finish, place a funnel through the top of a quart zip lock bag and scoop the prepared beets into the bag until filled.
Be sure the seal is clean and then close the bag making sure to get out as much air as possible. Smooth, label, and stack the bags, then freeze.
That’s it. You are now a pro at cooking off and freezing beets. If you would like to eat them fresh, simply peel them, add a little butter, and serve.
To complete your meal, pair your beets with pork, chicken, mashed, or a baked potato.
Enjoy, and I will talk to you next week.