pickled beets + urban picnic

Pickled Beets

i’ve been into quick pickling
this summer,
mainly because we have a glut
of vegs,
also because
it’s good for digestion,
and because
we have a lot of jars,
either i chuck ’em or use ’em.

when i’m in a mood
and food is the last thing
i want to play with,
we have picnics,
stuffed heaped on bread,
though not as fancy as this,
still very satisfying.

what’s your fave pickled veg?
(and, can you send me some?)

pickled beets + urban picnic

pickled beets

*note: this is the kind of recipe that is going to require you to use some common sense. beets vary in size, you might like your beets more tender, or more al dente. this is just a guideline.

12 small – medium beets, scrubbed and peeled
drizzle of oil (olive oil, i used organic canola oil)
dry italian seasoning (though fresh rosemary or thyme would be nice)
2/3 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup vinegar
1/4 tsp black peppercorns
6 whole cloves
6 whole allspice berries
2 -3 wide strips lemon zest
3 – 5 star anise
2 cinnamon sticks

heat oven to 400F.

meanwhile, with netflix going (i was watching Arrow, i think i’m gonna hit up The Returned next), scrub beets and peel. (i have a love hate relationship with this step. you can roast them first and then it’s easier to peel the skin away while warm, but i find that messy, with oil and random bits of herbs sticking to your hands. it’s up to you.) cut up any large beets so they’re all approximately the same size. place beets on baking dish lined with large piece of foil. drizzle with oil, top with italian seasoning, salt/pepper. cover with another sheet of foil and roast for 45min – 1 hour, until beets have reached desired doneness. this time around i made them tender, but the batch before that were toothier. do what you like.

when beets are warm to the touch, slice them up in either 3/8″ rounds or wedges. (i’ve done it where i sliced the beets before roasting, which made for much quicker roasting time, again, up to you.)

meanwhile, stir sugar, salt + 2 cups in sauce pan. bring to a gentle boil and stir until sugar dissolves. take off heat, stir in the vinegar and remaining seasonings. allow to cool.

in clean mason jars (or in our case, our huge 1/2 gallon mason jar) put the beets in a layer formation. (note: you can also add in sliced onions or cucumbers). half way up, pour a bit of the brine in, along with the various seasonings. continue to layer up with remaining beets and pour the rest of the brine into jar. if there is any leftover space in the jar, add a bit more water & vinegar (1:1 ratio) to top.

refrigerate for a day or so and consume. they do last awhile, just remember to use clean utensils when extracting the beets from the jar to keep from contamination etc.

BAM!

also pictured:
dutch oven bread
bruised cucumber salad

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13 thoughts on “pickled beets + urban picnic

      1. Hey, was going through the blog, it made me hungry 😛
        Your Thai iced tea is really refreshing..
        Hope I can add strawberry syrup to this. Please suggest.

  1. I looooove red beets, but am intimidated to work with them because of that serious red color. These look so delicious that I just might take the plunge… 🙂

  2. GREEN BEANS! Always pickled green beans are my favorite. (I don’t know how to make them though.) But, I have never met a pickle I did not like. Beets are wonderful, so glad you posted these! Are those chiles in your beet dish in the photo? I love your throwing-up-hands-lets-have-a-picnic dinner! Sometimes those simple meals are what Nathan and I end up enjoying most. I shouldn’t try so hard, hmmmm 😉 PS, I have The Returned in my queue too! Gotta start it!

    1. i’ve never had pickled green beans before! now i’m on a mission to try it out. i can’t recall if my csa has ever had green beans in their offerings, i will have to look into that.
      and yes, those are red chilis and i regret not adding them to the brine during the heating process, because it didn’t impart any heat to the end result.

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