The tart, slightly sweet flavor of pomegranate is hot right now. Once available only at ethnic markets, pomegranate juice, pomegranate soda and even pomegranate yogurt have become easy to find.
Here, I’m using pomegranate to create a glaze for beets. This is particularly pretty prepared with golden beets, because their color offers a contrast with the ruby red glaze. If you can’t find them, purple (red) beets are a fine choice.
I like to use baby beets because of their nice shapes when cut into halves or quarters, but larger beets can be substituted. The size of the baby beets will vary even in the same bunch, so you’ll have to be flexible with the cooking time.
Make Ahead: The beets can be cooked, peeled and refrigerated a day in advance.
Servings: 5 - 6
- 2 1/2 pounds baby beets with greens (1 1/2 pounds trimmed), root ends intact and all but 1 inch of stems removed
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 cup pomegranate juice
- 1 tablespoon sugar, or to taste
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Have a rimmed baking sheet and a pair of food-safe gloves at hand.
Rinse and scrub the beets well. Place them on a large piece of heavy-duty aluminum foil, then fold in the sides to create a packet with a tight seal. Place on the baking sheet; bake for 45 to 90 minutes, until the beets are tender when poked with a small knife or skewer. The cooking time will vary according to the size of the beets. Open the packets carefully (avoiding the rush of steam) to allow the beets to cool.
When they are cool enough to handle, don the gloves. Cut off the stem and root ends; peel off and discard the skins. Cut smaller beets in half and larger ones into quarters.
Melt the butter in a large, shallow pan over medium heat. Add the beets, pomegranate juice and sugar; season with salt to taste. Increase the heat to medium-high so the juice maintains a steady boil. Cook for 8 to 11 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the juice reduces to a syrupy glaze that can coat the back of a spoon.
Taste, and add sugar and/or salt as desired. Serve warm.
From Nourish columnist Stephanie Witt Sedgwick.
Tested by Stephanie Witt Sedgwick.
E-mail questions to the Food Section at email@example.com.