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Old 08-08-2011, 11:12 PM   #1
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Pickled Beets

I planted some Beets this year thinking I might try and can some pickled Beets. So now I have 2 questions.

#1 I think I let the beets grow longer than I should have but I am not sure. Some of them are close to the size of my fist. I pulled one tonight and cut it open and for never having planted or dealt with raw beets in my life it was pretty smooth and easy to cut through. So I had the bright idea to see what it tastes like and it tasted kinda sweet. Not bitter or woody like some radishes get when left in the dirt to long. I am not sure if beets flower but I have seen no signs of them starting. Are they OK to use do you think?

----------------------------------

OK now for question #2.

I want to use the recipie out of the Ball Blue Book of Preserving. I do not understand some of the directions. It says word for word:

"Wash beets; drain. Cook beets; peel. Combine all ingredients . . . . blah blah blah"

My question is how do you cook the beets? Boil in hot water? How long?

I was reading the web and found a couple pickled beet recipies. It seams like the just cut the leaves off and put them in a pot and boil them?

Thanks for any help guys.

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Old 08-08-2011, 11:44 PM   #2
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Love pickled beets. I usually use the smaller ones, but if yours taste OK, why not? As I recall, leave the root end on, and do not cut off all the greens, leave about an inch of greens. Otherwise they bleed. Cook and eat the greens later! Boil until the skins slip off, it takes awhile. When you can pierce them easily with a fork, and touch them and the skins slip off, they should be good to go. You will want to skin them and cut them up, then procede with your pickling.
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Old 08-09-2011, 12:20 AM   #3
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It's not uncommon for me to pull beets the size of baseballs. I've also gotten them larger and they are always sweet and tender. I think the fact you are pulling them from the ground and they aren't off a shelf makes a difference.

You will need to boil your beets for about 45 minutes. For pickling, you want them tender all the way through. If you were just par boiling to skin and freeze, it could be less. At about the 30 minute mark, start poking them with a fork. When they are tender all the way to the center, pull them out and plunge into cold water. When you can handle them, hold them under cold running water and rub the skins off (it will be very easy!). Slice and proceed with your pickling recipe.

Good luck!
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Old 08-09-2011, 01:00 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MNTaxi View Post
I planted some Beets this year thinking I might try and can some pickled Beets. So now I have 2 questions.

#1 I think I let the beets grow longer than I should have but I am not sure. Some of them are close to the size of my fist. I pulled one tonight and cut it open and for never having planted or dealt with raw beets in my life it was pretty smooth and easy to cut through. So I had the bright idea to see what it tastes like and it tasted kinda sweet. Not bitter or woody like some radishes get when left in the dirt to long. I am not sure if beets flower but I have seen no signs of them starting. Are they OK to use do you think?

----------------------------------

OK now for question #2.

I want to use the recipie out of the Ball Blue Book of Preserving. I do not understand some of the directions. It says word for word:

"Wash beets; drain. Cook beets; peel. Combine all ingredients . . . . blah blah blah"

My question is how do you cook the beets? Boil in hot water? How long?

I was reading the web and found a couple pickled beet recipies. It seams like the just cut the leaves off and put them in a pot and boil them?

Thanks for any help guys.
The beets are fine if they taste good. Just boil them in their skins till tender when you insert a knife. This takes anything from 1 to 1 1/2 hours.

I pickle my beets in Balsamic (yum!) Just bring enough balsamic to a gentle simmer and add 2 heaped teaspoons of brown or white sugar per cup of vinegar. I add a good pinch of salt too, it just makes it tastes less earthy. Stir till sugar has melted. Peel and slice, dice or grate the warm beets. Fill your jars till almost to the top with beets and pour hot vinegar mix over. Seal jars and allow to cool. If using regular screw top jars just turn upside down while hot and cool like this. (It seals the jars)
You can taste the vinegar and add more sugar if liked, I sometimes use maple syrup instead of sugar. White or brown grape vinegar can also be used.

I still have some I made last year and we had some over the weekend. They taste even better now
Beets are one of the easiest things to pickle, you'll get it right easily!
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Old 08-09-2011, 01:56 AM   #5
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Our experience has been consistent with the first two replies.
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Old 08-09-2011, 08:49 AM   #6
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all sounds good indeed - just a clarification on sliced vs. whole - not too many big beets fit in jar - I use my garden crop for pickled & sliced batches kept fresh in the fridge - vs. harvesting them "all at once"
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Old 08-09-2011, 11:02 AM   #7
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Sorry, I don't know much about canning beets but thought you might enjoy this recipe I posted here a while back.
Pretty Beet Salad

I keep a jar of pickled beets in the refrigerator for adding to green salads. They do a tasty and colorful job of perking up an ordinary salad, and I don't miss tomatoes when they aren't in season.
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