My office colleagues do a farm share of fruits and vegetables from Silverbrook Farm each Friday as part of a CSA. Even though I loved the idea, I declined being part of this group as I go out far too much and honestly, it’s just too much food for me and I would end up throwing it out. This past week, however, a colleague was on vacation so I said I would take her delivery. Well, I felt like an idiot as I honestly didn’t recognize half of the vegetables and I had no idea what to do with them. I had to look up a strange looking veggie called Kohlrabi and then work out what on earth I could make with it. As it happens there are some fun things. It also took me a while to figure out a white eggplant, if that is really what it is. What shall I make with that this week?
One of the items I did recognize was beets. What I had never ever done in the past was cook beets. I first had to work out how to cook them and was torn between roasting or boiling. I opted for boiling, which seemed a little easier. I googled some recipes for the beets and found a few I liked for some simple salads, which I thought would be a good start for cooking with beets. I found this particular recipe on a really cool blog called Simple Bites and adapted it to my own liking.
Orzo with Beets and Feta
Prep/Cook time: 1 hour 30 mins with fresh beets. 30 minutes without
Serves: 4-6 as a side
Using Fresh Beets:
3 small beets
1 tablespoon of lemon juice
1 table spoon of vinegar
1 cup dried orzo pasta
3 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 Tablespoon Balsamic vinegar
3 small beets, cooked and cut into cubes
1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
1 large scallion, roughly chopped
3/4 cup chopped bitter lettuce greens
salt and pepper
To cook beets: place beets in large sauce pan and add water plus 1 tablespoon of lemon juice and 1 tablespoon of vinegar. This will help to keep the beets from bleeding. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and similar until tender, about 45 minutes to 1 hour. Place pot under running cold water and let rinse the beets. The skins can now easily be peeled off the beets.
Bring a pot of salted water to a boil and cook orzo as per package directions, about ten minutes. Rinse with cold water and set aside to drain well.
In a small bowl, whisk together olive oil and Balsamic vinegar.
In a large bowl, combine orzo pasta, vinaigrette and sliced beets and mix well. Add crumbled feta and scallions; toss to combine.
Roughly chop bitter greens and add to the salad, mixing well. Lightly season the salad with salt and pepper, then taste and adjust as necessary.
This is just a fantastic recipe for a main or side dish, which can be served with meat or fish. I am going to try it with grilled shrimp later.