Welcome to Toque Toast Week 2! This week it's Beets! Not only a powerful blood cleanser, beets provide a great mix of flavor and texture to your next meal. In the cycling world, they have been made famous by Dr. Allen Lim's The Feedzone Cookbook, in which he recommends a small glass of beet juice every morning. Plus Garmin's Christian Vande Velde also launched his new blog by discussing his favorite beet salad recipe...the stars are aligning...it must be the week of the beet.
Due to their potency, a secondary juice (apple or orange) should accompany any beet juice recipe. Pure beet juice has been known to cause various symptoms as a result of its detoxifying capacity. Do not worry if your urine or stool changes to a red color after eating beets. In fact as a test of your digestive system's proficiency, pay attention to how long it takes for red stool to appear. If more than 12-16 hours pass, then you should consider some general improvements of your colon health. Note: detoxifying your blood and kidneys before detoxifying your colon will only result in the flush of bodily toxins into a malfunctioning large intestine. Ideally, you should experience 1 bowel movement / meal, so three meals = 3 movements. Also avoid eating calcium rich foods in conjunction with beets or any oxalic acid-rich foods for that matter as it can promote the long run development of kidney stones; examples include red meet or vegetables such as broccoli.
Beets have traditionally been used to improve conditions such as anemia, bladder problems, circulatory problems, eye fatigue, kidney and liver operation, lymphatic circulation, menstrual problems, menopause, ski problems, tiredness and weight loss problems. I have noticed great improvements to my asthma despite allergy season, greater overall energy, lower stress and improved recovery after hard race weekends or training blocks as the free radicals produced by the high levels of exertion are speedily flushed out my system.
#1: Boiled: DO NOT DO...I did this for months and I regret it: Peel beets and boil. Eat. Yuck. Take forever and is a big mess.
#2: Boiled: If you want to boil, wash lightly and remove beet green. Keep the tail of the beet attached. Place in boiling water for approximately 20 minutes. Drain water and remove beet skin with one grasp of the tail, the entire skin of the beet will come right off! Wear heavy latex gloves to avoid burning. Chop and serve/further prepare. Thanks Betsy Nusse!
#3: Roasted: If purchased with beet greens, make three cuts per beet. Cut the greens, cut the bottom part of the beet and remove a portion of the tail. Wash lightly. If a large beet, cut into 4 equal pieces. Place in tinfoil 7x7 inches. Add extra virgin olive oil and sea salt. Wrap and place in oven for 45 minutes at 400'F. Clean the beet greens, chop and steam in a pot until soft (15-20 minutes). Thanks Morgan Schmitt!
#4: Roasted: Cut and clean as described above. Then chop into cubes. Add golden beat, brussel sprouts and any other colorful hard vegetable: carrots, onion, etc. Apply small amount of coconut oil to sheet, add vegetables and any spice of your choice. Bake for 45-60 minutes. Yum! Thanks Zac Strode!