I love food. And I love to cook. I mean, really. I have been sort of obsessed with food/cooking a little more these last few months. Probably due in large part to all of my research on mouth ulcers, sheep dairying, and other random stuff - everything was pointing me toward organic. So I started buying local, in season as much as possible. I made it one of my goals for 2012 to try to go completely organic by the end of this year. We'll see how that pans out. In any case I have started trying new foods, vegetables in particular, in the attempt to stay in season. Two that I can honestly say I never ate until this last year are parsnips and beets. I love them both. Who knew? I have been trying to find new and different ways to cook them both - none of which have been received well by any of my kids. Well I take that back, the babies will eat both parsnips and beets. But they also eat the bark off of the floor that the kids track in from their playground, so I'm not sure that they count at this juncture in their lives.
I think I am most surprised at my love for beets. Maybe it's because they have such a bad reputation - but people - they are good. I have thus far tried them 4 ways. First: Shredded and sauteed in bacon grease (one of my new things - after reading a particular cookbook which has me scared witless about using canola anymore). They were great, but what doesn't taste good sauteed in bacon grease? Second: Cranberry Borscht. This was just ok. I'm not a huge cabbage fan, but I did eat it leftover so it obviously wan't too bad. Third: My favorite way so far - just roasted in the oven in foil, with a little olive oil salt & pepper. Perfect. I think I might have actually eaten near a pound of them myself. And lastly, today in ice cream. Yes that's right, Ice Cream. Ya see, I intend to write about my love for all things Thomas Keller here in a few days, but there's just way too much back story since I can't tell a short one, so starting right in the middle of the story, he has this recipe for Chocolate cake with beet ice cream. I have not made anything by this man that wasn't wonderful, so I figured I'd try it. Now, I didn't try it with the cake, which is a mistake. Because you can't take one thing from any of his recipes and eat it alone - all the flavors go together and they end up being amazing. So I'm hoping that when I serve it at Sunday lunch tomorrow with some fudge brownies, something amazing happens. Because right now, the ice cream tastes like beets. Hubs said "I don't think we should call this ice cream." And nearly tripped over himself on the way to the fridge to get a drink.