Posts Tagged ‘beets’

Using the Whole Vegetable

I really enjoy the idea of utilizing all parts of a vegetable (when possible.) This vegetable spent so much time growing, it just seems like a waste to throw away edible portions.

My meal tonight was in two parts: one half influenced by the greens, and the other by the root.

Part 1:

    Beet Green Seitan Open-Faced Fiesta Sandwich

Process: I put some broth in a pan and let beet greens and onions cook down, with a pinch of salt. A few minutes before it was ready to come off the stove, I added the seitan, and then a quick pat of butter. I toasted a piece of Wegman’s fresh store-made multi-grain hearty bread and used it as a base on which to celebrate the fiesta (aka food which hangs over the edges of the bread in a casual, party-like gleeful mess.)

Eating it: This was done with a fork and knife, by slicing the thick toasty bread with its vegetable toppings and enjoying the contrast in crispy vs. delicate textures on the plate.

Part 2:

    Something Like Borscht

A rainy day calls for soup, doesn’t it? I was wanting some Borscht like I used to enjoy at B & H Restaurant, a hole-in-the wall kind of comfort food ‘greasy spoon’ eatery near Tompkins Square Park. I remember going there some time maybe 4 years ago and having the most memorable soup ever. I mean, this was Borscht. The hot steaming hearty soup was like some kind of priceless inter-generational gem with a recipe passed from one side of the world to another; the chunks of veggies were tender, but not mushy, and the broth satisfied some full-palate taste yearning that I didn’t even know I had, until after it had been satisfied.

Unfortunately, most of the recipes I located for Borscht contained some form of tomatoes. Tomatoes don’t work so well for my stomach. So I decided that if I was omitting such a major component of most of these recipes, I may as well just go totally wild and make up my own thing.

Process: I chopped up the following vegetables: 2 potatoes, 1 onion, 4 small beets, 1 carrot, and 1/4 of a green cabbage. I put a liquid mixture in the pot of equal parts free-range chicken broth and water. I added a bit of salt and pepper and even a little non-dairy creamer.

Eating it: This soup was fairly mild, and alas, it couldn’t compare to the Borscht archetype as above. Nevertheless, a nice warm dish for an early autumn evening.

So, here’s a quandary perhaps you could help me solve. This is on the topic of using the whole vegetable. I’ve heard that you could eat the tops of carrots, and I have a whole bunch of organic carrots with beautiful green tops. However, I’m afraid to eat the tops…EDIT INSERTED HERE: Quandary solved. Reading this article submitted by Momsy has made me decide to NOT partake of the carrot tops. I’d like to stay on the safe side 🙂