|Honeyed Beets…perfect for
Sometimes classic things are the best. Many years ago, long before I was working with food professionally, I had an incredible cookbook collection. I had vintage books that were irreplaceable from the 1940’s and 1960’s, as well as more “modern” cookbooks. I loved going through the recipes – what was “old” suddenly became “new” when looking at the books through a fresh perspective. One year, in our attempt to be especially zealous with our Passover cleaning, we moved all my flour-covered cookbooks to the basement in cardboard boxes. Tragically (it was tragic to me at the time), our basement flooded before we had a chance to bring the boxes upstairs and unpack them. So sad. I wasn’t able to save most of the cookbooks, but the one cookbook that I made extra effort to save was my Betty Crocker’s Cookbook Copyright 1969. My goal in this blog is to share recipes that are delicious and not too hard to make. The Betty Crocker’s Cookbook is the poster child for those type of recipes. I love that cookbook. The pages and cover are completely warped from water damage, and some of the pages still stick together, but when I need a tried and true recipe it’s my go-to book. One of my all time favorite recipes – Honeyed Beets, is from that cookbook.
When I got married, my sweet, easy going husband, shared with me that he would eat anything that I would make…except beets and lima beans! (He probably would eat those too under duress but I don’t like to push my luck!). I really like beets, but because I’m the only one in my family that does, during the year I rarely make them (lima beans aren’t so much of an issue). The only time I specifically insist on making beets is Rosh Hashana when beets are one of the specially symbolic foods that we say a Y’hi Ratzon Blessing of Sheyistalku Oyveinu – May our adversaries be removed (maybe they’re “beet”en). The Honeyed Beets recipe from the Betty Crocker’s Cookbook is just the thing…beets and honey – perfect for Rosh Hashana!
When I was in the store today buying the beets, a nice lady came up to me and asked me how I make them (it really happened!). She said that her mother used to make them but she is phobic (my word) about making them. I used to be too…until I found the recipe in the book. You cook the beets with the peel on, and once the beets are cooked properly, you don’t even have to use a knife to peel them – you just put on a pair of disposable kitchen gloves and rub the peel right off!! It’s incredibly easy! I also have a cool French Fry cutting tool that I use when making multiple batches of this recipe for company, but when making a single batch I just cut them into long pieces with a knife. Really, it’s easy. If you’re feeling especially overwhelmed (or particularly lazy) you can even use canned beets (oh no!) but the fresh are way better.
A number of years ago, Rabbi Doug Zelden asked me to be on the Rosh Hashana episode of his Cable TV show – Taped with Rabbi Doug. If you want to see a video of how to make the beets (and see what I looked like when I was much younger) you can just watch this show Sharon Matten’s Holiday Honeyed Beets. It’s really fun, and you can see the process step by step.
I pulled out my special Betty Crocker’s cookbook to share this recipe with you and now it’s going back on the shelf in it’s special spot – but not for long…
I know that everyone is really focused on getting ready for Rosh Hashana…here are some more of my special Rosh Hashana Apple recipes which will are available on aish.com.
Have a Happy & Healthy New Year!!!
- 5 Medium beets (about 1 1/4 pounds) or 2 16 oz cans julienne beets, drained
- 1 medium onion, chopped (about 1/2 cup)
- 2 tablespoons margarine
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 tablespoon snipped parsley
To prepare the beets
- Cut off all but 2 inches of beet tops.
- Wash beets and leave whole with root ends attached.
- Heat 6 cups of water, 1 tablespoon vinegar (to preserve color) and 1 teaspoon salt to boiling.
- Add beets.
- Cover and heat to boiling; reduce heat.
- Boil until tender, 40 to 50 minutes; drain.
- Run cold water over beets; slip off skins and remove root ends.
- Cut into shoestring pieces.
For the recipe
- Prepare and cook beets as directed above; Cook and stir onion in margarine in 10-inch skillet (I used a large pot) over medium heat until onion is tender, about 5 minutes.
- Stir in beets, honey, lemon juice, salt and cinnamon.
- Heat, stirring occasionally, until beets are hot, about 5 minutes; sprinkle with parsley.
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