Saturday, November 20, 2010

Beet It

They Told Him Don't You Ever Come Around Here
Don't Wanna See Your Face, You Better Disappear
The Fire's In Their Eyes And Their Words Are Really Clear
So Beat It, Just Beat It
(Michael Jackson - lyrics "Beat It")

I know someone that probably wishes this song was about beets. She hates this red-fleshed, root vegetable with an intense passion that most reserve for politicians with bad hair. She would love to never see their face, and hopes that they disappear. For her, beets could beat it.

As for me, up until about a year ago, I was indifferent to beets. I had honestly never tried more than just a pickled slice served up as garnish on a restaurant plate. They were foreign to me. It wasn't that I didn't want them to come around. It wasn't that I didn't want to see their face, or for them to disappear. I just didn't know them.

A couple of other friends convinced me to give beets a try, and I am so glad that I did. One of my current favorite sides for meatloaf is Roasted Potatoes and Beets. Conventional methods for roasting beets leave them whole until after cooking, but I peel and cube the beets to roughly the same size as my potatoes. The red beets stain my tender, buttery Yukon Gold potatoes a little pink as I toss them together with the olive oil and seasonings, and both crisp on the outside with an almost caramelized crust. Hubs dips his in the ketchup along side the meatloaf. I like a dollop of sour cream and an extra grind of fresh cracked black pepper. Either way, I don't want beets to beat it. I want Roasted Potatoes and Beets to come around On My Plate.

1 -2 beets, peeled and cut into 1/2" - 3/4" cubes
3-4 potatoes, scrubbed and cut into 1/2" - 3/4" cubes (or an equal amount of baby potatoes halved)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Line a sheet pan with foil (for easy clean up).
Toss beets and potatoes with olive oil, salt, and pepper on sheet pan.
Cover with foil and roast for 15-20 minutes.
Remove foil, stir vegetables, and roast for 15 more minutes until crispy on outside and tender on inside. (Serves 2-4)

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