I bought some beets today, and a small change in my shopping habits caused me to try something new: beet greens. My habit is to say “yes” when the checkout clerk asks me if I would like the tops off of my beets. This time, my checkout clerk started by admiring how beautiful and fresh looking the greens were. She went on about how they looked “just picked.” Normally, I would have just had her remove the greens or I would have taken them off myself at home, but she caused me to take a fresh look at the truly nice looking stems and leaves. (I know, I know – “Get a life, Kim!”) Seriously though, her comments made me think, “I have never cooked beet green. If fact, I’m not sure if I have ever eaten them.”
Since I don’t like to think of myself as a hypocrite, and I DO often urge people to try new foods (especially vegetables), I decided to add them to my leftovers for lunch. My pasta with tuna tomato sauce took on a whole new flavor that I really enjoyed. . . and I added a real nutritional boost to my lunch. Beet greens are even more nutritious than the beets roots, with lots of vitamin c, potassium, iron, folate, fiber, and antioxidants. The calories are low too, not even enough to think about. The next time I buy beets and the checkout clerk asks me if I want the tops off of my beets, my answer will definitely be “no. . . but thank’s for asking!”
Arugula Salad With Beets and Toasted Walnuts
Try something new! Maybe you would like to try my beet salad. Just boil a few beets until tender, dice them, and spread them over a bed of fresh arugula leaves. Top it all with some toasted walnut pieces* and some crumbled goat cheese. Drizzle with balsamic vinaigrette dressing. If you have never eaten beets, or if you think you don’t like them, give this a try. You might surprise yourself!
*Toast walnuts on the stove top in a small skillet over low heat until the nuts become fragrant and brown slightly.