For what seems like forever my weekly to-do list has included ‘make some pickles’. It’s something I always plan to do on a rainy day but then get caught up making more essential things like home-made chicken stock.
So this week I committed to making at least one new pickle. I chose the following beetroot recipe because I’d cut it out of a magazine a few weeks earlier and it had been stuck to the fridge with a magnet door ever since.
Beetroot is high in fibre (3g per 100g), contains no fat and packs an antioxidant punch. So, although fresh beetroot is renowned for staining your hands, the work involved in cooking and peeling the bulbs is really worth it. This pickle can be used as a relish with meat or simply served with cheese and crackers.
Ingredients (makes around 500ml of pickle)
- 500g of fresh beetroot, stems and leaves removed
- 1/2 cup (125ml) apple cider vinegar (ideally organic)
- 1/2 (125ml) cup water
- 1/2 tsp black peppercorns
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp whole cloves
- Optional – natural sweetener such as stevia or xylitol to taste
Of course you can replace the natural sweetener with brown sugar. According to the original recipe you’d be looking to add around 80g of brown sugar for the quantity of beetroot above. But given that beetroot has a naturally sweet taste I’d suggest trying it with a natural sweetener or with no sugar.
Steps to prepare
- Wash and trim the beetroot bulbs and then wrap each bulb in foil ensuring the foil is completely sealed.
- Put the bulbs on a baking tray and roast for up to one hour at 200C, or until the beetroot is cooked enough to be easily pierced.
- While the beetroot is cooling combine all of the other ingredients in a saucepan over a high heat. Once boiling set aside and cover.
- Once the beetroot has cooled, pop on some disposable gloves if you’re keen to avoid hand staining, and peel the skin from the beetroot.
- Chop the beetroot into small chunks and add to a sterilised glass jar.
- Once the pan mixture has cooled pour it over the beetroot to cover and then store the jar in the fridge for a week before using.
- You could easily mix up the spices – cumin seeds would make a good alternative to the whole cloves.
- If your hands do stain then rub them with some lemon juice – I’ve read this can help to remove the colour.
By Laura (Feast Wisely)
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