Monday, July 20, 2009

The Oft Neglected Beet
Jessica Rosen visited us recently, and brought with her the idea for a fabulous sandwich combination—beets and avocado.
One of my favorite sandwich combinations is tomato/avocado/sprouts. Beets and avocado had never occured to me. I think beets are perhaps a vegetable often neglected, avoided or in many cases, even untried. An old-fashioned vegetable in the same category as turnips, parsnips and rutabagas. Something ones grandmother or great-grandmother might have cooked. No beets in sight at the fast food drive in windows, that's for sure.

On the last day of Jess's visit, I joined her and her mother, Helen, for a marvelous impromptu lunch combining it all: tomatoes, avocado, sliced beets, and mixed sprouts served on fat slices of Helen's freshly baked whole wheat, crunchy crusted baguette, drizzled with drops of extra virgin olive oil. This was a big hit and a fun project to eat. Best done family style with the individual components plated separately allowing each diner to stack her own baguette slice. Messy? Oh, yes. But worth every drip and each swipe of the napkin. If you try this, I'd advise using paper napkins. The beet juice is a real stainer.

The memory of that taste treat begged for an encore. With freshly baked whole wheat pita on hand, it was a snap to split one open and layer in juicy slices of red, ripe tomato, a couple of slices of cold, roasted beets, slivers of sliced Haas avocado, all topped with a big handful of freshly grown mixed sprouts. This messy sandwich made a fabulous supper treat.

Either bread choice makes a good sandwich, whether you choose open faced or closed. And the rich flavor combination of beets, avocado and tomato, tossed with a big bowl of dark leafy greens, dressed in a light vinaigrette, would make a super salad for a gluten free feast.

Live it up! Add beets for a new taste treat.

No comments: