A-Z of Plantalicious ingredients  B is for Beetroot. 

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This ruby- red jewel of a vegetable was always a somewhat poor relation in my home as a child. We had pickled beetroot from a jar. As a teenager, I worked in a market garden and used to boil beetroot in a huge copper. I hated it as a result of the pungent smell. As I got older I rediscovered the joys of beetroot.

Did you know that fresh beetroot juice is associated with improved athletic performance?  Have it ahead of a workout and combine with apple, carrot and ginger for a great kick-start juice.  Another terrific juice is Beetroot combined with strawberries and lime – I call it Red Rocket Fuel – see http://www.plantalicious.com/recipes/red-rocket-fuel-a-great-start-to-your-day/

A lot of people seem to dislike beetroot due to its earthy flavour. To reduce this, wash thoroughly and or peel it. You can use gloves to prevent your hands being stained red.

You can bake and roast them and then use in salads. I love to slice them thinly and use them as a base for salads especially using the gorgeous golden beetroot and pink ringed candy ones.

One simple dish that I do a lot is to peel and grate the beetroot (in a food processor or on a box grater) and sauté them in a pan. Before I chose to eat a no added fats wholefood plant based diet I would use butter or oil. Now I use a little stock with a few drops of balsamic vinegar and lots of black pepper.  I sauté them on a high heat until the juices evaporate and the grated beetroot is cooked. It makes a great side dish.

Another idea is to combines grated beetroot with grated potato to make an unusual rosti.

Some fun facts – Beetroot is a great hangover cure, a natural viagra and has an element in it which relaxes the mind (google it to find out more).

What are your beetroot recipes?

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