Recently, the earthy and unassuming root veg seems to be enjoying celebrity status among superfood enthusiasts, the nutri-concious, and people like me who by some unknown force are suddenly drawn to them in their little bundles at the supermarket.
According to lovebeetroot.co.uk, beets are protein packed, fat free, and full of natural sugar and antioxidants. And what’s more in Roman times, used as a popular aphrodisiac! I had a quick google to see if any other vegetables were worthy enough to have such a dedicated fan-site, but not one out of broccoli, cauliflower, sprouts, peas and carrots, brought up anything other than generic recipe sites. Definitely a testimony to beetroot’s recent ascent into vogue. Although according to the NHS, more evidence is needed before we can officially declare beetroot as a ‘superfood.’
When I was little, beetroot was intrinsically presented in jars of purple pickly juice, and was considered a luxury condiment reserved for relatives visiting at lunch time. The first time I had none-pickled beetroot, I was baffled and felt a little bit cheated.
After that, I wasn’t too keen on beetroot, and pickled onions became my fancy condiment of choice.
I remained unaware of the strangely wonderful power of beets until I tried Borscht soup in Lithuania, last summer. It was delicious, and flavoursome and very pretty and became our new favourite thing until Marc grew increasingly concerned about the colour of his pooh.
More recently, I too have been gripped by an infiltrated lust for beetroot. However, not really knowing what to do with like actual, real beetroot: my first bunch remained in the cupboard for about two weeks, until guilt slowly but surely displaced my good intentions.
I popped them in a pan, thinking, ‘I’ll just bloody boil the buggers!’ But the ghost of beetroot past made herself known and I took to shredding them in my food processor instead. I proceeded to try and turn them into burgers using oats and the wonder that is cornflour!
And what do you know…they didn’t turn out too badly! They stayed together well, though admittedly they were lacking a bit of a kick.
I tried them a second time, deciding to keep some of the ingredients raw, and it worked, and made them super healthy! And….I made them to my own improvised recipe 😀 Very, very chuffed with oneself at the moment!
For those of you are bold enough, here’s what I put in them and how 🙂
For 4-5 burgers:
2 medium sized beetroots
1 large carrot,
half a small onion
1-2 cloves garlic (depending on how much you like it!)
dollop of ketchup
dash of balsamic vinegar
salt and pepper
cumin seeds (optional)
two handfuls of oats
a handful of cornflour
First bring the beets to the boil and them let them simmer for around 25 minutes. (you don’t want them too mushy!) Once they’re done, peel and roughly chop and add to food processor.
Peel and chop carrot and onion and add that, along with garlic, ketchup, balsamic to the beetroot.
Sprinkle in salt, pepper, and any herbs you might like to try in it.
Add the oats and a handful of cornflour for shaping.
Stir in cumin seeds, and/or any other seeds you might like to try.
Heat a dash of oil in large frying pan or skillet, recommend brushing it for even cover. Let it get quite hot before adding burgers.
To make the patty shapes, I rubbed a little cornfour onto my palms, and then scooped a bit of the mixture out and smoothed into a little ball. If this doesn’t work you might need to add a little more cornflour, just try a little at a time, as you don’t want to make them too floury.
Pop them into the pan and fry each side for about 6-8 minutes.
Remove (embellish with desired condiments) and enjoy!