Winter is a great time for beets. And they’re really easy to grow. Just throw the seeds into good soil that you’ve worked with lots of compost and wait and wait and wait. They do take months to grow. Once you see their little tops peaking out of the ground, thin them, otherwise you’ll have long skinny beets that look more like skinny carrots. (I already made that mistake).
You’ll know when they’re ready to pick–the beet tops start to poke out of the soil. Don’t worry if you pick too soon….just stick them back in the dirt until they’re ready.
You can plant them now and they’ll be ready for summer. Just remember…good soil and thin them out. They might even work in a planter/container. But they do like lots of sun.
Now for the fun part. Pluck them from the ground and make Beet and Goat Cheese Towers.
Here’s the recipe:
3 large red beets
4 oz. goat cheese
good extra virgin olive oil
juice of one orange
sea salt and fresh ground pepper
Preheat oven to 400.
Wash beets and cut off ends. Rub with olive oil and wrap individually in foil.
Put on a cookie sheet and bake until tender and a knife comes out easily–about 1 hour.
Let cool and then rub off skin. It should come off easily because of the olive oil. But rub under cold water if they need a little extra help.
Refrigerate until cool, about 1/2 hour.
Cut into even slices and begin to make your towers.
Put a slice of goat cheese on the beet, and continue to build.
You should have about 4 beet slices and 3 cheese fillings.
Garnish with a little orange and lemon zest and a quick squeeze of orange juice to give it a nice bite.
Finish with the salt and pepper.
Prep time: 15 minutes
Total time: About 2 hours.
Note: Don’t make them too far in advance as the beets tend to turn the cheese pink!
Oh…you may want to wear kitchen gloves when peeling them…unless you want magenta fingers.