The beet, whose roots and leaves are both edible is that rarity among plant foods- a root vegetable with a second super healing leafy green vegetable attached as quoted in the book Super Healing Foods. This book has a wealth of information. The healing power is in your kitchen.
BAKED RED BEETS– The baked apple/baked potato Alternative
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
Scrub two large fresh beets. Cut off leaves and stems about one inch above beet top. Pat dry. Rub each beet with a little olive or canola oil and sprinkle with a few drops of water. Place in a baking dish and cover with baking parchment paper or foil.
Roast 45 minutres or until tender.
Serve as you would a baked apple or baked potato (spud) with a dab of yogurt (instead of sour cream) and a sprinkle of Super Healing salt. (see recipe). Makes 2 servings.
Benefits of eating beets:
Beetroots have a rich supply of beta-carotene (22,700 IU) and organic mineral salts that speed tissue repair, detoxify the blood stream, and nourish the circulation that feed every living cell in the body. Beets are also good brain and antifatigue food. They are high in two amino acids (glutamine and asparagine), betaine ( a vitamin-like substance that aids brain function), and B-complex vitamins, especially folate, the antidepression vitamin.
Benefits of Beet greens:
Beet green rank in the five top rated sources of three anti-aging pigment anti -oxidants:
1. The flavenoids, which produce “vitamin P” activity for strengthening the immune system, and the joint structures and vascular system.
2. the alpha and beta ani-cancer carotenes.
3..chlorrophhl, the fat soluble substance that stimulates hemoblobin and red blood cell production ( and is useful in relieving heavy menstrual flow) , and provides protection from free radical threats to the immune system.
Beet greens also contain calcium, potassium, iron, and vitamins A and C, they are essential to any healthy heart program.
Buying and storing:
The way to tell if the beets are good quality is if they have fresh-looking greens attached (slightly fabby greens can be restored to freshness if refrigerated in water). The roots should be firm, smooth, and the color a vibrant purple. The younger the root, the richer the nutritional rewards.
Smaller beets are best for juicing, larger ones for steaming, baking, pickling, etc.
Beets can be stored for three to five days in the refrigerator or with greens removed, two to four weeks.
Note: My maternal family heritage was in the coal-mining regions of Pennsylvania in Schulkul county. When I spoke of this recipe, my mother relayed to me that growing up that had cooked red beets , as well as pickled beets that her mother and grandmother prepared themselves to be canned and placed in their root cellar. She recall that on Fridays they frequently had potatoes, baked in a large pan ( recipe Koshie).