Pickled beets are my grandma’s favorite. All my grandmas, that is. Here is a quick and easy recipe to preserve them without heating up the kitchen with a hot boiling water bath.
Yield: 1 quart
- 4 medium beets, cooked, peeled and sliced (or more if using small, tender beets)
- 1/2 tsp. ground cloves
- 1 cup apple cider vinegar
- 1 cup water
- 1/3 cup white granulated sugar
- 1 tsp kosher salt
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Use a vegetable brush to gently scrub the beets clean. Trim off the leafy ends, place the beets in a pot of water and bring to a boil. Cook the beets until they are tender and can easily be pierced with a fork, about 25 minutes. Remove from heat, drain and let cool.
Once cooled enough to handle, trim off the root-end of each beet and use your hands to break the outer layer of skin. Use your thumbs to rub away the skin.
Removing the skin can become a messy job. I recommend having a bowl for the discarded skins and another dish for the peeled beets. I normally do this over a large cutting board.
Once peeled, slice beets to your desired shape and size. I prefer to cut my beets into chunks, but go ahead and slice them if that’s your preference.
Heat a small saucepan over medium high heat with vinegar, water, sugar and salt, stir until the salt and sugar has dissolved and remove from heat. See side notes for alternative seasoning suggestions.
Pack a clean quart canning jar with sliced beets, add in ground cloves. Pour the warm brine over the beets and allow to cool for 30 minutes before refrigerating. Screw on the jar lid and tighten ring.
Transfer to the refrigerator. Best if enjoyed within a couple months.
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Other ingredients to consider adding to the pickled beets: one whole cinnamon stick, a couple cloves of fresh garlic, a few whole allspice, a few whole black peppercorns, two bay leaves or even a sliced hot pepper.