I finally have a kitchen again. They should be installing the final piece, backsplashes, as I write this. But over the weekend I was finally able to start cooking and harvesting my overgrown vegetables. There were beets that had been calling my name for weeks. By the way, keep an eye out for peeks of granite in the pictures.

I had one regular beet (the dark red one, closest) and lots of chioggia beets ready to be pulled. Or mostly ready. I planted them too close together and some had stunted growth. Let’s just call them “baby beets.” The one standard beet actually managed to last from fall after all it’s brother and sister beets were devoured by snails. It remained a sprout and started to grow with all my sprouts for the new chioggia– or as my grandma calls them, “candycane”– beets. Apparently it was more mature, though, and grew a large woody stalk that started trying to flower. It was ready to come out of the ground! So what do you do with beets? Roast them in foil!

Step one is to remove the leaves and save them to make beet greens (I’ll share that in another post). After you set aside your greens, wash and trim the beets. While the chioggia beets don’t have as much crazy color as my standard beet, still be careful not to cut into the beet unless you want stained hands, cutting board, everything.

Next, wrap the beets in foil, a little olive oil and salt are optional. You’re going to get rid of the skin so, in my opinion, it’s not imparting that much flavor. I wrapped my large beet by itself but put a couple of the smaller beets together in one package.

Put them on a baking sheet in the oven at 375* F for 45 minutes and then check them. My beets weren’t huge so they were more than ready to come out, but if you have large beets, wait until they are tender when poked with a fork.

Roasted beets in foil! Amazing and delicious. Be careful with standard beets unless you like pink fingers. Now you get to peel the skin off the beets which should come off fairly easily. In the past I’ve used paper towels to handle the beet (plastic gloves would work really well), but these beets were fresh and perfectly cooked so I managed to rub the foil around to remove the skin from my beet.

The chioggia beets have very little color and I was able to use my bare hands to remove their skins which slipped right off. Naked little beets!

Normally if I am using standard beets I put them in a bowl so they don’t stain my butcher block cutting board, but the little pink beets were fine to be sliced on the board.

See why my grandma calls them candycane beets? They’re like little candycanes in the middle with their stripes. Of course, when I was a kid I thought it should mean that it tasted like mint and was let down when it didn’t, but grandma, I forgive you. I still like beets and candycane beets.

I sliced my beets and put them in the refrigerator (after eating a few). They are great with some blue cheese, mixed lettuce and vinaigrette.  These ones were originally destined for beet and dark chocolate ice cream but I made a different kind of ice cream instead.