Delicious Detox Beetroot, Avocado and Wild Rice Salad

Delicious Detox Beetroot Salad ©2014 La Domestique

I don’t believe I ever saw a single beetroot growing up. Never even thought much about that strange dirt cloaked root until I grew up and planted a garden. I fell in love with beets after tasting my very first homegrown beet baby, pulled from the soil just minutes before cooking.

I love beetroot because it’s not just flavourful—it’s highly aromatic. I’m not talking about the shrivelled specimens, petrified beet fossils left to languish in supermarket fridges. Freshly harvested beetroot from the garden or farmers market is perfumed with the sweet and musky scent of the soil.

The shockingly crimson colour of beetroot is due to a special type of anti-oxidants called betacyanins, which aid the liver in detoxifying the body while also reducing cholesterol and blood pressure. Beets are packed with iron and B vitamins as well, to keep your blood cells healthy and your nerves firing on all cylinders. I’m talkin’ all sorts of anti-inflammatory goodness to keep your heart pumping and your blood flowing.

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This Past Week at La Domestique: Beets

Beets(c)2011LaDomestique.com

Last week at La Domestique we cooked in the moment, celebrating a bountiful harvest of beets in my Colorado garden. The earthy sweetness of beets provided tons of inspiration for cooking with flavorful ingredients like curries, ginger, and even chocolate. If you’re sick of the same old roasted beets, I’ve got plenty of ideas!

Just in case you missed anything, here is a recap for you!

  • Monday:  Announcing beets as the ingredient of the week in our second videocast. Also, congrats to Leslie who won our giveaway contest- a copy of David Lebovitz’s book, The Perfect Scoop.
  • Tuesday:  10 Ways Tuesday! Creative ideas for cooking with beets and beet greens during summer.
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Beets & Cured Salmon

Happy Friday! Today’s post is inspired by Jamie’s Food Escapes, on the Cooking Channel. During his trip to Stockholm, Sweden, Jamie made his version of gravlax. The Swedish love their cured fish, especially gravlax, which is raw salmon cured in sugar, salt, and other flavorings. In her book, Handmade Living, Swedish born Lotta Jansdotter shares a recipe for Gravad Lax that she learned from her father. Gravlax is sliced paper thin and often served as part of a Swedish smorgasbord, which means “bread and butter table” or a festive buffet.

As I pondered over how to end beet week, I thought of how Jamie Oliver used grated raw beets as part of his salmon cure. The beets dye the salmon garnet red and contribute a sweet, earthy flavor. It’s really beautiful sliced because you see layers of color in the salmon ranging from deep red to bright orange. We’re also cooking in the moment as wild Alaskan salmon is currently in season and there’s some gorgeous product at the fish market.

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Storyboard: Beets

Beet Storyboard (c)2011 LaDomestique.com

Beets

Right now my garden in Louisville, Colorado (just outside of Boulder), is bursting with beets. I planted the common red garden beet and golden yellow beets in my plot. Look out for other hybrids in farmers markets, like the Chiogga beet (aka candy cane), which has rings of red and white flesh. Beets are a root vegetable with generous edible leafy green tops. Beet greens are thick and maintain their texture during braising. They taste mild with a hint of beetiness (tastes like a beet, go figure). Some beets are round, while others are elongated. The flavor of hybrid varieties like Chiogga is sweeter and milder than the intense earthiness and slight bitter character of red beets. According to the Produce Bible, beets contain more sucrose than any other vegetable. This natural sweetness is enhanced by roasting.

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Cook in the Moment: Beet Lasagna

I made something for you. I made a new recipe and it just so happens to be vegetarian. For real. I spent a lot of time thinking about beets today. . . probably too much time. I pondered their sweet, earthy flavor and jewel toned colors. I thought of my all time favorite beet dish: salad with goat cheese, beets, and hazelnuts. When beets and hazelnuts get together it’s pure magic, there’s just something special about that combo. My brain began to hurt as I tried and tried to come up with a unique and tasty recipe (I would be terrible on Top Chef, just not a quick thinker). Then it came to me- beet lasagna! I know it’s summer and you don’t want anything too rich or heavy. Please bear with me, I promise this dish is not super rich. How to make a lasagna that’s not heavy? Focus on just a few stellar flavors: beets and thyme, ricotta and lemon zest, burrata and hazelnuts.

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