Years ago as one of my go-to comfort foods, I would roast beets and later saute them in butter and maple syrup. Just thinking about the texture and flavor still makes me relax into contentment. I don't make beets as much these days as my husband belongs to the forming club of spouses and significant others who hates beets. But I thought MAYBE this recipe would tempt him if I updated it a bit. I mean who can resist maple syrup, butter and bacon?? I kept the warming maple syrup and butter from my original approach, and added apple, oranges and bacon for a total great burst of flavor with the beets. I told him to think of the beets as burgandy pancakes.... let's just say he wasn't going for it. But I hope all you beet lovers out there enjoy this one! I have more beets to cook up and I'm doing this recipe all over again tonight. —TheWimpyVegetarian
1 (but can easily be expanded for more)
small beets, peeled (if you have medium sized beets, quarter or slice them before roasting)
maple syrup, enough to coat the beets
orange juice from 1/2 orange
slice bacon, cut into lardons
Granny Smith apple (or other tart apple), peeled and brunoise diced
Preheat oven to 400F. You don't have to peel the beets before roasting, but I use a potato peeler and it's worked quite well. If the beets are larger, quarter them or slice them before putting them in foil packets for faster cooking. Place the beets in a foil packet. Pour the maple syrup and orange juice over them and lightly salt. Toss the beets to cover well; seal the packets with 2 pieces of foil and roast for about an hour, until tender. Set aside.
Fry the bacon lardons over medium heat until crispy. Drain and set aside.
Drain the bacon grease from the pan, add 1/2 Tablespoon butter and saute the apple over medium heat until just tender (you don't want mush!), about 3 minutes. In the last 30 seconds, add the orange brunoise and lightly toss. Remove from the heat and set aside.
Open the foil packets, remove the beets - reserving the liquid, and slice. In a saute pan, melt the rest of the butter over medium-low heat, add the maple syrup, apple cider vinegar and orange juice and stir to combine. Add the beets and the reserved beet juice. Gently simmer until the liquid becomes a syrupy consistency, about 10-15 minutes. Add salt to taste, if needed.
Serve the beets on a plate, drizzling the syrup over them. Top with the apple - orange brunoise salsa and finish with a sprinkling of bacon lardons.