Yes, I know tomorrow (Monday, May 28th) is Memorial Day in the U.S., and the “traditional” start to summer and the grilling season. Yes, I will be grilling, carne asada, (hey, it’s a Pan-Cultural-Fusiony thing), which is so ridiculously easy and also so similar to the marinated pork I just wrote about, that I won’t bore you with the details (OK, *if* you’re interested, marinate some skirt or flank steak in some red wine vinegar, some oil, some S&P, some herbs [cilantro, dried oregano, garlic] and maybe some lime juice. How long you marinate depends on how thick the steak. Flank overnight, skirt 2 to 4 hours. Covered, in the 'fridge. Grill, slice against the grain, make tacos with corn tortillas and some salsa fresca. Carry on.) But this post isn’t about grilling, although I suppose you could do both dishes on a grill, and they’d work. No, it’s about roasting and pan-roasting and the magic of old time, old-school, French-style pan sauces. And yes, I am fully aware that the picture of those beets up top looks like some sort of oozing, alien life form. Sorry. Roasted beets apparently aren’t very photogenic, but they sure are tasty, especially when mixed with a tangy dressing and made into a lovely salad.
First up the beets. Like many of the veggies I cook with lately, (thanks to my CSA, The Growing Experience), I came late to the beet love. Oh, we ate enough of them when I was a kid, and I liked them just fine. They were always canned, and my Mom usually mixed them with thin-sliced onions and some vinegar with a touch of sugar, to make sort of a quick pickle. As an adult, I bought them, again only in cans, for the same preparation, or julienned to toss into a green salad. But they were only rare guests in the little kitchen. Too many other, bright, shiny, trendy things to play with. I certainly never bought fresh beets. I wouldn’t have had a clue as to what to do with them. They were, well, intimidating. Hard, leafy, and they *gasp* STAIN THINGS.
Yeah. Like dishrags. OK, that rag was a little tired even before the run-in with the beets, and frankly the beet stain rinsed out pretty quickly (and came off my fingers just as easily), but the juice color is an issue. I wouldn’t use a good towel around them, jus’ sayin’.