RECIPE: Beet Mashed Potatoes | THE NIBBLE Blog - Adventures In The World Of Fine Food RECIPE: Beet Mashed Potatoes – THE NIBBLE Blog – Adventures In The World Of Fine Food
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RECIPE: Beet Mashed Potatoes

Beets and mashed potatoes are a delicious side with any protein, and a perfect color for Valentine’s Day.

At any time of year, this lavish mash recipe is sure to impress. It’s easy to prepare when you use packaged baby beets, typically found shrink-wrapped in the produce department. This recipe is courtesy Love Beets. Find more beet recipes at LoveBeets.com.

The recipe serves two: prep time 5 minutes, cooking time 20 minutes.

RECIPE: MASHED BEETS & POTATOES

Ingredients

  • 1 pound all-purpose potatoes, peeled
  • 1/2 package baby beets (3.25 ounces) or
    equivalent canned or fresh-cooked beets
  • 4 tablespoons crème fraîche*
  • Salt and pepper
  •  

    mashed-potatoes-beets-lovebeets-230

    Purple passion: mashed beets and potatoes. Photo courtesy LoveBeets.com.

     
    ___________
    *Buy crème fraîche or make your own with this recipe.

     

    mashed-beets-potatoes-steak-lovebeets
    Serve the mash with your favorite protein.
    Photo courtesy Love Beets.
     

    Preparation

    1. PEEL the potatoes and cut each into 8 pieces. Put them into a large pan of salted water and bring to boiling. Simmer for 10 minutes until the potatoes are fork-tender. While the potatoes cook…

    2. CHOP the beets into quarters.

    3. DRAIN the potatoes and add the quartered beets and crème fraîche to the pan. Mash everything together well until you have a smooth pink mash. Season to taste.

     

    THE HISTORY OF BEETS

    Beets, Beta vulgaris are a root vegetable: leaves grow above ground, and the edible root is below. In America, the shortened form, beet, is used instead of the longer beetroot.

    Beets evolved from wild sea beet, which grew in places as wide-ranging as Britain and India. It was first cultivated in the eastern Mediterranean and Middle East—although only the leaves were eaten. (Even today, beet greens are delicious. Don’t throw them away: Sauté them in olive oil with some minced garlic.)

    Roman recipes included cooking beets with honey and wine. Apicius, the renowned Roman gourmet, included a beet broth recipe in his cookbook as well as beet salad with a dressing of mustard, oil and vinegar. All are still fine recipes today.

    The original beet roots were long and thin like carrots. The rounded root shape of today was developed in the 16th century; by the 18th century it was widely cultivated in central and eastern Europe. Many of today’s classic beet dishes originated in this region, including borscht.

    In 19th century England, beets’ dramatic color were often used to brighten up salads and soups. The high sugar content made it a popular ingredient in cakes and puddings (and in the U.S., led to the creation of red velvet cake).

    Today there are many varieties of beets sizes large and small, including candy-striped (with red and white concentric circles), orange, white and yellow. Look for these specialty beets in farmers markets.
     
    BEET TIPS

    You can use cooked beets in any recipe that requires raw beets. Just reduce the cooking time accordingly.

    Alas, beet juice does stain. If you aren’t a very neat cook or eater, wear dark clothing! But beet juice is a water-soluble dye, so try one of these methods to clean up stains:

  • To remove from hands, rub with lemon juice and salt before washing with soap and water.
  • To remove from fabric, rub a slice of raw pear on the stain before washing or rinse in cold water before washing in detergent.
  • For cutting boards and containers, use a bleach solution.
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