Archive for August 14, 2013

The Best Pickled Beets…..EVER!

Suzanne’s neighbor, Bernie the Saint, makes the most delicious pickled beets on the planet. I was so excited to grow beets in my garden this year so I could pickle my own using Bernie’s recipe, but alas, there weren’t enough beets ready to be harvested at the same time, so I had to buy most of them.  My friend, Karlene, and I have been canning fools lately.  We made strawberry jam, raspberry jam, and just last week, pickled beets. Its so much more fun to can with a friend! When we were making the strawberry jam, I said, “Hey, I smell smoke.  The neighbors must be burning brush.” But then we noticed a wooden spoon had worked its way onto the burner and was smouldering.  We got a good laugh out of that.  But anyways, back to the beets…here is the recipe for the most delicious pickled beets you will ever eat:

1 1/2 C. sugar
1 T. whole allspice
1 1/2 tsp. salt
2 sticks cinnamon
3 1/2 C. vinegar
1 1/2 C. water
3 quarts peeled, cooked small beets

To cook the beets, wash and drain beets.  To prevent the beets from “bleeding” too much, leave the tap root on and leave 2 inches when trimming the stems.  Put the beets in a large pot and cover with boiling water. Cook for about 20-25 mins.   

Immediately put the cooked beets into a sink full of cold water.  This will help the skins to slip off. Using gloves, rub each beet until all the skins are off.

In the meantime, combine the brine ingredients and simmer for 15 minutes. Put the lids and rings in a pot of water and keep hot. Bring a canner with water to almost a boil.

Cut the beets into slices, large chunks, or even leave them whole if they are small enough and pack them into hot jars leaving 1/2 inch head space.

Strain the brine to remove the cinnamon sticks and whole allspice.  Bring the brine to a boil.  Pour the brine over the beets leaving 1/2 inch head space.  Put a lid and ring on each jar and hand tighten.  Place the jars in the canner and process in boiling water bath for 30 minutes.

After processing, remove the jars from the water and let cool.  After the jars have cooled, make sure all the lids have sealed.

Yield: about 6 pints.