Beets must be quite the winter foodie ingredient! I too ventured into the land of twerpy root vegetables with this quinoa hash. I’d never cooked fresh beets either – though I love them pickled. As I was nibbling on raw beet skin–I peeled my beets rather than taking the hair off, as M did for her beet soup–I noticed that the flavors are much more subdued in fresh beets. When they’ve been pickled, they have a tangy, bright taste that complements dark green leafy vegetables very well. In their fresh state, they are ‘earthy,’ to use M’s word.
And, I agree – don’t wear anything light when messing with beets. This is what happens to your hands:
Beet excursion aside, this dinner was a success for me because I have now successfully poached an egg. See my little, adorable, perfect egg balloon below:
As a newcomer to the runny egg camp, I had never eaten a poached egg before I tried earlier this week after watching a video on B.A. about how to poach eggs. Let’s just say that method doesn’t work. To successfully poach an egg, you need to put some vinegar in the water, and use a cup (or ramekin or something else) to slowly drop the egg entirely into the water. Then chase it around with a spoon folding up the whites. The method in the following recipe works much better.
Fall-Vegetable and Quinoa Hash with Poached Eggs, modified from Whole Living, instead of this gross-looking bulgur thing I was supposed to make for day 6 of the B.A. cleanse. Also, I know this was supposed to be a breakfast, but I wanted it for dinner.
1 large sweet potato, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
2 1/2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
2 beets, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch wedges, greens reserved and rinsed well [if they’re small, use 3 beets – since they come in threes at the store]
1 tablespoon white-wine vinegar
4 large eggs
1 leek, white and pale-green parts only, rinsed well and diced
Cooked quinoa (from 1/2 cup dry)
Dried thyme [obligatory nod to the recipe – wasn’t terribly exciting]
Curry powder [the spices suggested didn’t cut it – curry is my preference, but you could use other herbs instead]
Salt [if you don’t put salt in this, you can’t taste any of the flavors and it’s rather icky]
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Toss sweet potato with 1/2 teaspoon oil and 1/4 teaspoon salt; spread in an even layer on half of a rimmed baking sheet. Toss beets with 1/2 teaspoon oil and 1/8 teaspoon salt; spread on other half of sheet (so that beets don’t discolor potatoes). Roast, stirring halfway through, until tender, 35 to 40 minutes–less if you cut the vegetables smaller.
Meanwhile, bring a large saucepan of water to a boil; add vinegar. Break each egg into a teacup. Reduce heat so that water is just simmering. Slightly immerse 1 teacup, and gently slide egg into water. Use a spoon to fold edges of white over egg. Repeat with remaining eggs. Simmer until whites are just set but yolks are runny, 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer eggs to a towel using a slotted spoon, and drain.
Thinly slice beet greens. Heat 1 1/2 teaspoons oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add greens, leek, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper; cook until tender and lightly browned, 8 to 10 minutes. Stir in quinoa, spices, and roasted vegetables. Cook until quinoa is warm, 1 to 2 minutes. Divide among 4 plates; top each with 1 egg, and season with pepper and curry.