What is Beetroot?

For many people, beetroot is that sliced, purple-red vegetable confined in a jar of vinegar, that nothing more.

A member of the same family spinach belongs to — the amaranth family – beetroots have a fairly boring reputation.  Aside from pickling, it is known to be good food…for animals.

What you may not be aware of is that it can be used in so many creative ways:  baked, boiled, stewed, as part of salads, health juice or in a mash, served hot or cold, raw or processed.

Beetroots aren’t hard to recognize.  Aside from being a tall plant – about two feet in height –betalain pigments made its roots brightly purple-red in color that changes to a deep red as they mature.

Derived from the maritime sea beet, all its parts, roots, leaves and all, can be eaten.  The taste of the beetroot’s lower leaves matches the taste of spinach when boiled.  They are often used in soups like borsch, a popular soup in Eastern Europe, or mixed with sorrel.

A native of South Europe, the beetroot is used in the production of sugar because of its high sugar content.  It is also the source of betanin, a food coloring used in sweet foods such as jelly and breakfast cereals to improve their color.

In addition, beetroots are used as a decorative plant owing to its beautiful leaves and red-violet stems.

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