This is our favourite Pickled Beet Recipe. Submitted to naturalmommy from mom, Su Edwards. You’ll love ’em too since they are sweet and retain that earthy beet flavour.
You Will Need:
Vinegar (white or apple cider)
Sugar (white is generally what people use, but we suggest the organic sugar cane)
Pot, Ladle, Tongs, Knife
Boil beets with the skins on until cooked; this generally takes about an hour or so. Make sure that you do not cut into the beet skin before cooking.
While your beets are cooking, take out your jars + lids and wash thoroughly. Take the lids as well as some cooking tongs and a ladle and put them to boil in a pot on the stove to sterilize. The ladle and the tongs (metal is best here) just need the bottoms to be sterilized, not the handles. Just let them stay there until you are ready for them. If they have boiled for a long time you can turn the heat off, but still leave them in the hot water.
Take your clean jars and put upright on a baking sheet. The jars should be a bit moist from washing them, but not full of water. Heat over to 200-250 degrees and place jars inside. While you are doing the rest of the steps they will be sterilizing in the oven. You can also sterilize jars and lids in a dishwasher if you have a newer model with a sterilization setting or you can boil them, facing down.
Once beets are cooked, take off of heat. Drain and rinse with cold water. All the skins when you rub them with you hands will just fall off. Make sure they are fully clean (no skins or dirt). Place in bowl and set aside. Trim ends with paring knife if they are rough.
Wash out your beet boiling pot and put back on stove.
Add your beets back to the pot. If you have some really large beets that won’t fit in the jars than you can cut them now. The idea here is that you use full beets or large chunks so do not cut into small pieces.
Add equal parts vinegar and sugar to the pot until the beets are covered. For one big basket of beets, you’ll likely need 4 cups of vinegar to 4 cups of sugar.
Bring pot to a boil. This stage will not take long. You know they are ready when there seems to be oil forming on the top. Look closely, it’s there. This won’t take long, maybe 5 minutes or less of boiling. The smell of the boiling vinegar is intense – don’t worry, it’s normal.
Pull out jars from oven and set on stove beside pot.
DO NOT touch the inside of the jars, the lids or the part of your utensils that will touch the beets. This will contaminate it (plus it’s really hot!).
With your ladle, add beets to jars. You will get juice in the jars as you add beets, but focus more on beets than juice at this stage. Once full of beets add juice until you have about a quarter of an inch left in the jars (you fill just past the neck of the jars).
Take your tongs and add lids, making sure to only touch the outside part. Screw on tightly and let sit to cool. Once cool, tighten the lids again.
Most people suggest a hot water bath after you screw the lids on. This basically means that you put them submerged in a pot of boiling water. This helps to make sure they are sterilized. Su says the hot water bath is optional for this recipe.
Above image is the Pickled Beets we made ourselves at naturalmommy. We grew our beets with Cubit’s Organic Seeds in Editor Siobhan’s organic garden plot. Below Image: Cubits Organic Beets, from their website which can be found [here].