I Couldn’t “BEET” This One

beets

OK, so Jennifer got me.  This Once Upon a Chef inspiration really got me with her balsamic glazed roasted beets.

Developing one’s personal arsenal of recipes rarely begins from scratch.  These days it’s just too easy to see what all the other foodies are up to out there!

Usually I make a new recipe by following the prescribed rules (OK, yes, mostly following the rules.)  It just makes sense and there’s almost a sense of ‘honoring’ the original creator–although as most recipes have been borrowed and tweaked from hand to hand who knows where it really all began?

But I have my own take on kitchen concoctions and love to play around with possibilities… I enjoy adding more of this or substituting that to see if I can “Michelle-ize” the recipe.  Hey, we all get our kicks in different ways…

This recipe for beets, however–as many simple recipes are–is absolutely perfecto as-is.  I would not change one single solitary thing.

I made it.  We ate it.  We wanted more.

Also, as Jennifer states on her blog, the glaze is actually good enough to drink.  My girls greedily scooped it up with their spoons and slurped down every last drop.

Balsamic Glazed Roasted Beets

Ingredients: Approx. 6 med. beets, salt, olive oil, maple syrup and any balsamic vinegar (don’t go fancy-vinegar here, doesn’t matter)

Directions: Clean, peel (if you like) and cube the beets.  Place on a cookie sheet and drizzle with olive oil/sprinkle with salt.  Roast at 400 degrees for about 40 minutes or until beets are cooked.

As beets are finishing up, heat 1/3 cup vinegar and 1 tbsp. maple syrup on stove top.  Stir constantly as it will heat quickly and you don’t want to burn the sugars.

When the beets are done, simply pour glaze over the top and dig in.

Tips: I used golden beets because that’s what I had.  Although my five-year-old son swears he can tell the difference between red or yellow beets, the rest of the family agrees we cannot.  We don’t argue with Grayson though.  It’s not worth it.

Nutrition info if ya wanna know: Besides magnesium, calcium and iron, beets contain significant amounts of folic acid which helps in the production of new cells.  Beets have also been linked to prevention of cancer, especially colon cancer.

(Also, my girls would like me to point out that it’s very exciting–after eating red beets–to see that your pee has turned pink.  Hey, like I said, we all get our kicks in different ways.)

Don’t Adjust That Dial

rainbow flower

Here we have a little something I termed “rainbow-flower” (as opposed to cauliflower) and broccoli.  My 5 year-old son accompanied me to the farmers market recently, and chose the purple and yellow cauliflower featured with our good friend, Mr. Green Broccoli.

I have seen purple cauliflower in grocery stores before, but not yellow.  It’s raw in this photo, but all these veggies retained their technicolor appeal after roasting as well.  I did my usual with a couple ‘a cloves of garlic, drizzle of olive oil and a dash of salt.  Roast at a high heat (400-425) for about 25 mins.

My second grader, and resident politician, suggested we keep track of who preferred which one.  This endeavor evolved into a voting process and tally sheet which she diligently managed throughout the course of the meal.

I used to use this type of “see which one you prefer” type game to encourage sampling when my kids were little.  We don’t need a gimmick anymore, but it was still fun.

My girls acknowledged that with eyes closed, you couldn’t tell the difference between the yellow and purple cauliflower, but my stubborn little guy insisted (picture older sisters rolling their eyes, knowingly) that he could taste the different colors.  Let’s just say that it’s really not worth arguing with him (about this or much else these days…)

But anyway, what do I care?  The kid motored through his vegetables and enjoyed every bite!

Roasted Chicken Anyone?

chicken

This week at our home… we’ll be enjoying a savory citrus-y roasted chicken!  If you’d like to make one too, check out the recipe by clicking on the “recipes” page at the top of my blog and select “meat.”

I buy mostly organic meats for my family.  Who the heck can afford to feed a family of 5 organic meats?  I have found some ways to make it work on a very tight budget (Hi: my husband is a public school teacher and I am a full time homemaker.  When I say “tight budget,” I mean it!)

I would like to take a moment to remind/inform everyone reading this that I, Michelle Calva-Despard, do not choose to cook recipes with long ingredient lists nor with lengthy, painstaking steps.  Someday when I’m not up to my neck in laundry and PTA, I may return to the more exotic side of the culinary world, but for now, I’m committed to making tasty, healthy, affordable and simple-to-make meals for my familia.  Do not fear my recipes!

You can look forward to a recipe “from our home” every Monday for the time being.  We eat a lot around here, so that should keep my Monday posts humming along for a while!

With my magic wand (aka: experienced mommy brain) I can turn this roasted chicken into three or four meals for my hungry bunch.  But for today; it’s just a beautiful and tasty roasted chicken.  And by the way, it tastes as good as it looks…