Adventures in Beeting

I’ve always been a fan of beets. There’s something earthy and humble about them – all purple and concentric once you peel back a few layers. Pickled beets have been a particular favourite of mine, although until this year, I had to rely on the canning skills and kindness of friends to get my fill. My kitchen usually celebrated their arrival with a nice chocolate beet cake. But no more! This year I tackled the beet beast and managed to can 18 jars, all sliced to (almost) perfection. Here’s what I learned along the way…

1. The ingredient list is short. Just vinegar, salt, sugar and water – plus, of course, the purple beauties themselves.

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2. Beets aren’t nearly as attractive raw and untrimmed as they are cooked and with their tails cut off.

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3. Beets are tricky to peel with gloves on – so much so that I’d risk purple-stained fingertips to do it without them.

4. Beets are even trickier to slice into near-perfect 1/2 inch thick rounds. Gloves are also over-rated in this exercise.

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5. There’s nothing more satisfying than filling a lot of jars with beety goodness.

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6. Even if you end up with dozens of jars, once you’re found out as a keeper of beets, they’ll be gone before you know it!

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7. And then you’re left with only fond memories and beet stains until next season :(.

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Happy beeting, friends!

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