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Wednesday, May 5, 2010

BEETS: Our Harvest and a Pickled Spiced Beet Recipe

Today we are harvesting beets!

So what to do with all these beets? Here is a recommendation from Professor Kevin Scott, UC Davis Viticulture & Enology. He loves the spiced beet recipe he first discovered in a vintage UC Davis Extension Cookbook from about 30 years ago!

Canning is a fairly easy process once you get used to it, but you want to make sure, sure, sure everything has been sterilized and safely sealed. For more information on canning resources and how-t0s see the links below.


4 c. vinegar
1.5 cups sugar
1/2 teaspoon whole cloves
3 quarts cooked small beets, peeled

1. Cook beets until tender. Plunge into cold water and slip skins -- or use canned beats.
2. Mix vinegar, sugar, and cloves. Simmer 10 minutes.
3. Add beets and simmer 10 minutes more.
4. Pack beets into hot, sterilized jars and fill with liquid. Seal.
5. Process in boiling water bath for 20 minutes as directed on page 3*. (We don't have page 3, but the idea is to process the jars for their final seal and sterilization. Don't know what that means? Here are a couple resources to help out.)

Did you know that cold weather makes bull's blood beets leaves turn red? If you grow this variety in milder weather the leaves stay green! The leaves that Arlene are holding below are both from the same plant. The red leaf grew in the winter whereas the green leaf grew recently. Nature is so amazing don't you think??


kate said...

YUM. I LOVE beets- nice photos!

UC Davis Good Life Garden said...

Besides cloves (uck!) try galic, and or hot peppers. Maybe some black pepper corns.
Make sure you read and understand the proceedure for canning. Canning low acid foods can be tricky. That is why there is so much vinegar being used.