Nobody ever says, can I have your beets?Bill Cosby
Canning season has officially arrived at our riverside sanctuary! Over the years, my husband has honed in his gardening and canning skills. This year promises to be a showcase! He premiered the season with his first round of pickled beets.
I love the flavor of pickled beets, and welcome them as an accompaniment to any meal. In addition, they provide an array of health benefits. Beets may help prevent certain inflammatory diseases. The flavonoids found in pickled beets are powerful antioxidants that have been shown to reduce inflammation and help boost your immune system.
Pickled beets are a great source for potassium, calcium and iron. As a fermented food, they promote good gut bacteria which is necessary for digestive health. Also, they are high in fiber, which is generally lacking in the Standard American Diet (SAD).
Labor of Love
A Typical Canning Day
The day before, my husband picks and cleans the beets. On the eve of canning day, he pulls out all the jars, kettles and other gadgets required for the main event.
The next morning, after warning me to stay out of his kitchen, he starts the hours-long process of pickling and canning said beets.
The day is filled with complete trashing of the kitchen, including splashes of red beet juice worthy of a crime scene blood bath! The earthy aromas are intoxicating. The sporadic “pops” of canning jar lids as they are vacuum sealed always puts a sparkle in my eye and a smile on my face! Eventually, there will be celebratory glasses of wine. 🍷
It’s an event that makes me giddy. Not only does it mean great food to keep in our cupboard for a whole year, but it also signals the sizzling summer season is gently yielding to my favorite time of the year….autumn!
Fun Facts About Beets
- The beet was initially cultivated around 2,000 BC in the Mediterranean region.
- You can eat the entire plant, from the leafy greens to the ruby red root!
- They come in a spectrum of colors, including the red, yellow, candy cane and rainbow varieties.
- Up to 15 percent of the population (including me) experience pink or red pee after consuming beets. This condition is call beeturia. It is generally no cause for concern, but it can sometimes be a sign of an iron deficiency.
Additional Reading for Pickled Beet Geeks
Here is a well-constructed article written by Gord Kerr on the livestrong.com site that will further explain my love for pickled beets:
Thanks for joining me! – Barb, the River Blogger (Btrb)