A slight fog still hung in the air of a brisk morning when the worn, cracked finger of the farmer plunged into the still-cool soil. The small hole was made, like a damp little bedroom, and two tiny seeds were dropped in. Rich earth was sprinkled over top of them, securing them in their place, and silence eventually fell upon them as the farmer moved slowly down his garden aisle, planting, until finally he finished and was gone. Quiet. Stillness. Only the dark earth surrounded the two little seed’s along with their new neighbors, the roly-poly and the tiny worms.
Some days the sun shone, other days the rain gently fell. Day became night and night became day, and the seed’s little tails began to sprout, pushing down into the soil that was the only home they knew. The two seeds grew together, side by side, nourished by the same water, nutrients and sunlight. Their little bodies slowly began taking shape, their tails grew into little woody roots and their tops became long, green and leafy above the earth.
Over time, they became two young golden beets, entwined into one little hearty bunch. They kept each other company, strengthening their bond and their growth until they finally became the hearty, bright-orange bulbs they were planted to one day become. At last the day came that the farmer with the cracked fingers pulled the two, now-large golden beets out of their dark, sleepy home and into the bright afternoon sunshine. The sun warmed them as they were placed in a basket and onto a wheelbarrow. The larger golden beet took in his surroundings and sighed. “You’ve been with me through all that I know of life; you’ve been my best friend, my confidant, and together we matured in the darkness of the earth to one day see the light of day.” The other beet listened intently to her friend, and agreed. Then he said, “I want to tell you thank you for your friendship. You will have my heart forever”, and he kissed her cheek.
Upon being kissed by her dear friend, the little golden beet’s cheeks blushed with shyness as gratitude and love filled her. The blushing spread from her cheeks and slowly throughout the rest of her, until she became completely red. Joy so filled her that she remained red, passing along love into all the beets that descended from her as a reminder of the kiss received and the words spoken to her by her dear love.
That is the tale of how the red beets became red. They blushed.
Taste what’s good and pass it on!
Warm Golden & Red Beet Salad With Fresh Orange Tarragon Vinaigrette And Pistachios
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Beet Salad Ingredients: (serves 4)
5 Gold Beets
5 Red Beets
4 tablespoons olive oil, divided use
½ teaspoon salt, divided use
2 pinches pepper, divided use
2 tablespoons pistachios, chopped (for garnish)
*Keep gold beets separate from the red beets to avoid staining them.
-Preheat oven to 400 degrees, and line a baking sheet with foil.
-Working first with the gold beets, peel and quarter them (if large, then cut each half into thirds) and place into a medium bowl; drizzle with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil, ¼ teaspoon of the salt and a pinch of pepper; toss to coat and turn out onto half on the baking sheet.
-Next, peel and quarter the red beets (again, if large, then cut each half into thirds) and place into the bowl used for the golden beets a moment ago; drizzle with the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil, the ¼ teaspoon of salt and pinch of pepper, and toss to coat; turn out onto the other half of the baking sheet, avoiding the gold and red beets touching; roast for 45-50 minutes until paring knife can easily pierce, then remove from oven and allow to slightly cool for 10 minutes.
-While beets cool, prepare the vinaigrette.
Orange-Tarragon Vinaigrette Ingredients:
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
2 tablespoons fresh orange juice (from a fresh orange, preferably)
¼ teaspoon orange zest
1teaspoon sugar (or honey)
¼ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon chopped fresh tarragon
4 tablespoons olive oil
-In a small bowl, add all ingredients and whisk to combine until completely emulsified.
-Drizzle an equal amount of the vinaigrette over the gold beets and next the red on the baking sheet; first, gently toss the gold beets to coat, and next the red.
-Stack each plate with a few red beets on the bottom, next the gold, then red to alternate their colors, and finish by sprinkling each warm beet salad with about ½ tablespoon of the chopped pistachios, and serve.