This might be a trick question - in my experience pickled beets are sweet and sour by necessity for canning. I have my mother-in-laws recipe that has been used for years and years and here is one from simply recipes that is like the one handed down
It might just be as simple as that. I don't want typical pickling spice. I'm aiming for the flavor of childhood - which is not to say my mother cooked this from scratch, but rather that it likely came from a Jewish deli.
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