Some ingredients have an unexplainable flavor. That’s why we use our creativity to combine and create flavors that could be used in our recipes. One of the misunderstood root vegetable and ingredient is beet.
Beets are believed to taste like dirt that’s why people are in doubt when using them in their recipe because of its rich earthy flavor. The question is, what do beets taste like and why do they taste that way?
What Affects the Earthy Taste of Beets?
Beets are rich in geosmin, a compound produced by microbes in the soil. This is the reason why its taste and smell is similar to a freshly plowed dirt or a field after a rainstorm. This is the reason why some people are sensitive to this smell on some of the foods it’s mixed with. Many don’t like this flavor, but some people love it.
People are mistaken when they see that beet has the taste of dirt, but they’re not aware that it’s the compound which is intertwined with the beets that give the earthy taste. There are other vegetables which share this quality, including lettuce, spinach, and mushrooms. What you taste is the geosmin compound, and it can’t be easily washed away.
Many people associate the beet’s taste to dirt; others would describe it as earthy. In Australia, it’s common that a hamburger has a thick slice of beet in it. But in America, it’s not a favorite item. But, did you know that European scientists in Napoleonic era turned the beets as a source of sugar? Some beets nowadays are bred for their sugar source potential.
Beets may have the dirt or earthy flavor, but there are qualities in beets that you can use in cooking. Pair the beets with proper components so you can bring out the sweetness it has.
Why are Beets Hard to Sell?
Beets don’t sell that much especially when it’s raw. They have an unappealing look, and if you are a regular shopper, you might say that it has gone wrong. It has stringy, long white tendrils coming from its sides. It has a brownish color that leaves people with a poor impression. However, if you cut the beet open and peel the ugly outer skin, you will have the colorful and glossy garnish. You can use a beet peeler to remove the ugly layer.
We shouldn’t judge a vegetable by its aroma because its actual flavor is not dirt. Most Americans have their first experience of beet as a canned product. If you only use buy beets as canned goods, then you miss out its wonders.
What are The Cooking Methods You Can Do to Change Beet’s Taste?
Cooks are creative people, and if you aspire to be one, you should have the creativity to make creative dishes, especially if it involves beets. There are many unusual ways to cook beets, and there are particular foods that taste incredible when beets are correctly added to them.
For example, chicken won’t taste that good if you just leave it in the oven until it’s cooked; or salmon would taste bad if lemon is not added. Beets are somewhat the same. Your way of preparation will change its taste. You can roast, boil or steam beets, or eaten raw. Each method will change how beets will taste like.
When you roast the beets, you will achieve a more concentrated flavor. The beets will become tenderer like a potato, and its sweeter flavor will be emphasized. Boiling the beets will give you a more subdued flavor that makes them ideal for meat dishes inclusion. You can also mash the beets to mix with hummus, smoothies and cookie dough. The fastest way to cook beets is through steaming. The earthy flavor might be retained, but you can eliminate it by mixing coconut oil.
What Herbs to Use with Beets?
Preparing your beets with herbs can also make a big difference in the beet’s flavors. Properly seasoned beets might change people’s perspective on it. However, you should select the proper herbs that will help in the offsetting of beet’s robust flavor.
To tone down the beet’s flavor, use basil. Boiled beets complement well with chives. Robust seasonings like ginger, cloves, cumin, fennel, and allspice help to subdue the beet’s active profile.
What are Healthy Dishes that Highlights Beets?
Like I what said earlier, beet’s flavor can be changed when cooked well or complemented well with herbs. If you can’t imagine putting beets on your dishes or meals, then you should now because there are amazing dishes that complements well with beets.
You can try preparing beet hummus. It’s a great start for people who are beginners when it comes to using beets in their recipes. Beet salad is another recipe that will help you adjust to the taste of the beets. Once you prepared it correctly, you can bring out the sweet flavor of the beets.
Those are the two dishes you can start to make if you’re not a beet fan but wants to know how it tastes beyond its misunderstood earthy flavor.
Beets might not be for everyone especially that we have different tastes. The thing is; there are a lot of health benefits you can get from beets.
Read more: Yummy Raw Hummus Recipe
Health Benefits of Beets
Beet juice can also improve your stamina especially when you want to prolong your workout routine. Not only the nitrates lower the blood pressure, but it also enhances someone’s tolerance to high-intensity exercises.
Beet is also an excellent source of betaine. It protects proteins, cells, and enzymes from environmental stress. According to World’s Healthiest Foods, it fights inflammation, improves vascular risk factors and protects internal organs.
There are a lot of amazing things you can get from beets, and when it comes to beet preparation, all it takes is a proper cooking method and herbs to change its taste. But if you want to retain its earthy flavor, you can still opt to do that.
Read more: How to Make a Healthy Omelet in 4 Easy Steps
There are more things I want you to learn about beets, but I hope you learned enough from this article. Beets taste like earthy because of its compound, but you can cook it in ways that will yield delicious flavors. Share this information with others so that beets won’t be a stereotyped vegetable anymore. If you have questions, ask us right away.