Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Beets Me

I may have mentioned once or twice that, by education and until recently also by profession, I am a nutritionist. I've spent many a year studying nutrition and so I know quite a bit about food. However. Apparently there are new things for all of us to learn, so I am now passing on my knowledge to you guys.

First, some background. I am not a picky eater. Never have been really. I remember as a kid, I didn't like onions- I'd even pick out the tiny little ones in a McDonalds hamburger Happy Meal on those rare occasions we were lucky enough to eat out at one of those high-falutin' restaurants. I also didn't like zucchini, unless it was in my aunt's zucchini bread which is basically banana bread with zucchini instead of banana. Moral of the story- sugar makes everything better.

There was just one other food that I knew of that I DID.NOT. like. The culprit: beets.

Beets were one of those tricky foods- they look so gosh darned purdy with their purpley purpleness oozing out in a, "Hey baby....you should taste me because I'm purple and you know you can't resist purple so why don't you take a nice, big juicy bite out of my tasty purpleness. You know you want to. Baby," sort of way. Apparently beets are also quite the sleazeballs of the tuber family.

(An aside: My mother-in-law's first language is not English, so she sometimes still to this day will have very amusing turns of phrases. This past Thanksgiving, she was talking about a really unsavory person she once knew- a real jerk. She said, ever so seriously, "He was a really big squeeze-ball!"  Oh dear me...I don't think I'd laughed so hard in a really long time.)

The only problem with beets is that they kinda sorta really taste like....well, like dirt. Or at least what I assume dirt tastes like because that is not something I'd know from experience. Nope. Surely not.

So, I pretty much have avoided beets, no matter how purpley they were nor how much my coworkers told me they tasted good and were good for me. Yes, I'll grudgingly admit that they are indeed a very healthy food. But still. DIRT.

HOWEVER. At a work conference I attended two years ago, there was a beet and walnut salad available on the buffet and, since my coworker told me that it was a really good salad, and since I was a new employee and wanted to look tough and adventurous, I decided to try that darned salad. If anything, it would test my acting ability- could I get it down without making an, "EWW GROSS!" face? 

Much to my surprise, that darned purpley salad tasted as good as it looked! Well blow me down and call me Popeye! I couldn't believe it! Beets that didn't taste like dirt! They had some sort of vinegar on them, that I knew- whether balsamic or red wine, I don't recall- but ever since then I've been on the hunt for the pretty, non-dirt tasting beets but to my dismay have not been successful.

Until now. I found a recipe on Epicurious for Roasted Beet Salad with Oranges and Beet Greens and it had decent reviews, so I thought, "I am going to try this one more time and if they taste like dirt, well, at least I'll now know what dirt tastes like because I have never tasted dirt before in my life. Ever."

So I made the salad with a few modifications- I didn't have the sweet onion, so I omitted that, and I really just wanted the beets and not the oranges, so I used a little bit of orange juice instead of the orange slices.

OMG. I don't remember dirt beets tasting so good! I really really REALLY enjoyed them. My Mister...not so much. He thought they were good, but they didn't float his boat. HOWEVER. He's not writing this blog so his primitive taste buds don't count. I really liked this salad A LOT. A lot, a lot. I ended up eating most of it last night and then finished it off for lunch today. That's right- I, an avowed beet hater, ate beets TWO DAYS IN A ROW!

And now comes the, "Wow- I did not know that," part. I feel like I should have known this since I am a nutritionist, and I may have learned it many years ago but may have repressed that knowledge along with any memories I may or may not have had about eating dirt. I'm also sure that had I been a beet eater all my life I would have also known this so my ignorance is justified.

Apparently, what goes in purple.....COMES OUT PURPLE. There is no need for alarm. You are not dying. Your intestines are not falling out and you don't have cancer of either the urinary or digestive tracts. There is absolutely no need to call your husband over to take a look and see if he thinks you are dying, as well. NOPE. All completely normal.

And you can take my word for it because I'm a nutritionist. A really really edumacted one. 


  1. Frankly, the whole purple-in, purple-out system is the biggest reason some people eat beets to begin with. ;-)


    You are a stitch!


  3. You absolutely kill me. I soooo love your blog.

    I *love* beets, especially spiced pickled beets. I have no problem eating an entire can of beets in one sitting. LOL

    Found some seeds of a carnival variety of color of beets which I'll be planting later this year.

  4. Roses- I just *knew* there was a reason sane people ate beets! After the initial shock wore off, I must admit I started planning my next beet-eating excursion. Muahahahaha!

    Kuddles- haha! I thought you'd get a kick out of that. :)

    Kim- Thank you so much for the blog lovin'! Since I've just started on my beet-eating experiences, I'm going to have to slowly work my way up to pickled beets. Baby steps, Kim. Baby steps. Although, a carnival variety of color really does sound fascinating- can't imagine what the color will end up being on the other side... ;)