Sunday, March 8, 2015

Just Beet It

Beets seem to be one of those vegetables that you either love, or hate. Some people love the sweet flavor, others find them too earthy (dirt). I am not a fan myself. They are so unbelievably gorgeous, it seems impossible that something so brilliant could taste so dirty!
When I first started incorporating juices and smoothies into my diet, I did a lot of research into what fruits and veggies are most beneficial, what goes well together, and what fruits and veg I wanted to eat/drink more of. Beets came up over and over for a few reasons, two of which are they are powerhouses nutritionally, and I realized I needed to get more red into my diet! I'll never forget my first beet juice experience. I remember it was beets, carrot, cucumber, and apple. The juice itself was so beautiful, I thought it would have to be delicious. Man, I could not have been more wrong. I choked it down, but it took a loooooooooooong time! One of the many benefits of beets is that it helps to detoxify the liver. And it helps purify the blood. Since I drank so heavily in the past, I am always looking for foods, and herbs that heal the liver. So, I had to find a way to make beet juice palatable. I've done ALOT of experimenting, and I've learned a lot. I've learned to not mix celery with beets, pears work better than apples to mask the flavor, if you can, add pineapple to the mix because pineapple loves to overpower beets, and the juice of a lemon, or lime is imperative to cut the earth flavor. Adding ginger, or fresh herbs like cilantro or parsley also help make tastier beet juice.
And now, I have learned the biggest and best beet flavor fighter. Blood oranges. For some random reason, I found a bag of blood oranges on sale for $1.99! Blood oranges are usually out of my price range, so I figured blood orange and beet juice would be my new experiment. I blended two smallish beets, plus the greens, one pear, a small knob of ginger, and four blood oranges, strained my juice through a mesh strainer, and had a beautiful glass of juice. The blood oranges made the juice even more ruby than usual. I squeezed in the juice of half of a lemon and gave a tentative taste. I couldn't believe it, for the first time in my life, I almost liked it! Something about the tartness of the blood orange really cut out almost all of the dirty(sorry earthy) flavor of the beets! I came so close to enjoying this juice, I'm gonna go ahead and say it, it really was a bloody miracle!
If you eat or juice beets, make sure you're usint the greens as well. The greens are full of Vitamins A, K, and C. As well as containing high amounts of calcium, iron, magnesium, potassium, and choline.

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