Saturday, February 4, 2012

Agave Sweetened Pickled Beets

I got some beautiful Chioggia beets from Stella at Horny Toad Farms a couple of weeks ago. They are just gorgeous. Look at those rings of goodness. These are pictured right after steaming.

In hind sight I should have left well enough alone, but I had it in my head that I wanted to make Fred some pickled beets. He buys lots of pickled goodies from the farmers' market. It's good stuff, but holy wow is it expensive. So I thought if I could come up with a good recipe, I could save him some hard earned cash.

This recipe is not one to be saved in the pantry as it is not pressure cooked. It is a refrigerated version that will keep for a couple of weeks in the fridge. I decided to try agave nectar to lower the glycemic hit a bit. Fred gave them his seal of approval...with a caveat that they are a little vinegary. Just warning you ahead of time, these are not sticky sweet beets. I used the Chioggia in the first batch and beautiful rings faded, so I recommend using single colored beets for pickling and save these beauties for steaming.

Agave Sweetened Pickled Beets

Makes about 1 quart

1 1/4 pounds beets, about 3-4 cups after slicing
2 large shallots, halved and sliced thin
1 cup white wine vinegar
1 cup cider vinegar
1 cup water
2/3 cup agave nectar
2 cinnamon sticks

Wash beets. Cut off leaves if still intact. In a steamer, steam beets until soft enough to pierce with a fork easily. Let cool until cool enough to handle. Peel beets and cut into 1/4 inch slices. Place sliced beets, sliced shallots and cinnamon sticks in cleaned and sanitized quart canning jar. 

In a saucepan combine vinegars, water and agave nectar. Bring to a boil. Pour liquid into jar. While it is still hot, seal with new clean and sanitized canning lid. Let cool to room temperature. Place in fridge. Let sit for at least three days. They should keep for a few weeks.

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