A couple of events lately have lead to my having an above average amount of beetroot in my fridge that needs using. Firstly my friend had a large bundle arrive in her weekly fruit and veg box, she wasn’t sure what to do with it all and gave me half, then two of my recent shoots used beetroot and so I have ended up with more left overs!
I love beetroot, I like the earthy, rich flavor and the vibrant colour but it does seem to be a vegetable that many are not a fan of or perhaps its just that we are at a loss as to how to use it. I thought it might be nice to share how I used my large bundle of beetroot, in quite a few different ways..
Firstly I made a healthy grain salad. As well as a lot of beetroot I have a truck load of left over grains from my latest book shoot. So I decided to combine and made this very healthy delicious salad. I am a huge fan of an Ottolenghi style salad spread and I think this one could easily make the mix.
Wild Rice and Beetroot Sesame Salad
150g brown and wild rice ( I had the premixed packet but you can make your own easily too)
300g beetroot, peeled and finely shredded ( I used a mandolin)
80ml rice vinegar
20ml Agave syrup
1 tbsp black sesame seeds
2 tbsp mixed seeds (I used sunflower, sesame, pumpkin and hemp seeds)
Salt and Pepper to Season
Cook the rice according the the packet. (I usually cover the rice with equal amount of water and bring to the boil, then reduce heat to medium to low and simmer for 15 minutes or so until all water absorbed. Turn heat off and keep covered for another 5 minutes.) While the rice is cooking, prepare your beetroot and dressing.
TIP: When handling beetroot its not a bad idea to wear a rubber glove, it can leave quite a stain!
For the dressing, combine the rice vinegar, agave syrup and some salt and pepper. In a medium mixing bowl sprinkle the seeds over the shredded beetroot. Add the cooked rice and dressing and stir to combine.
Beetroot Recipe No. 2 has become my favourite cake of the moment. I first tasted it on a market stall at my local Farmers Market and have been making it for a while now. Its is SO delicious and such a favourite that it also features in my new book, mentioned here.
Beetroot and Hazelnut Cake
150g raw beetroot, grated
200 ml groundnut oil
250g golden caster sugar
3 medium eggs, separated
3 tablespoons milk
100g hazelnuts, roasted and chopped
200g plain flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon each ground ginger, cinnamon and nutmeg
180g butter, softened
350g icing sugar
1 tablespoon milk
250g cream cheese, softened
1tsp beetroot coloured water
Preheat the oven to 170°C. Grease and line 3 x 20-22cm round cake tins, with removable base.
Place 1 tsp of grated beetroot in a small bowl and cover with 1 tsp of boiling water. This will colour your icing later. Don’t be tempted to add more water as it will dilute the colour and you’ll not get much of a change to your icing. Leave aside to cool.
Sift the flour and baking powder together in a small bowl and set aside.
Whisk the sugar and oil together in a large bowl. Add the egg yolks and milk and whisk. Fold in the nuts and the remaining beetroot. Stir the sifted flour mix and the spices into the mixture.
In a separate bowl whisk the egg whites until stiff peaks have formed. Fold a third of the egg whites into the beetroot mixture and incorporate fully before folding the remaining two thirds into the mixture. Divide the mixture between the prepared tins and bake for 25 mins or until a skewer inserted into the middle of the cake comes out clean.
Cool in tins for 5-10 mins and then turn out on to wire racks to cool completely before icing and assembling.
To make the icing, beat the butter, icing sugar and milk together with an electric mixer. Add the teaspoon of beetroot coloured water that you reserved in the beginning of the recipe. Continue to beat until all you have a thick but smooth and creamy mixture. Add the cream cheese and beat until incorporated.
Assemble your cake with layers of icing in between each cake layer and ice the top and sides of the complete cake.
There are so many more things I love to use beetroot for, roasting beetroot is great, also pickling beetroot is a favourite, using beetroot in fresh juices… are you a beetroot fan? How do you most like to use it?