Life is still a bit busy around here but 93-year old Rob is out of hospital and on the road to recovery. He’s a bit tender in the boy area and he wears out more quickly but he loves his new room at Arcare with it’s ‘music room’ alcove complete with sofa, TV and a cabinet complete with little fridge. You never know when a quiet glass of single malt scotch with one ice cube might come in handy while you listen to the opera.
Joan still loves her room but she’s not happy there. She realized yesterday that she can’t get out on her own and refused to get up. I went over at 9am and waited until 10:30 for her to get ready for our walk. After dinner she exploded when Rob wanted to go back to his room because he said she couldn’t go with him. Alzheimer’s is a cruel disease. I know it will make me sound awful but her tantrums don’t do a thing to me. They used to but then I realized in 5 minutes she was fine and I was still fretting an hour later. No more.
Back in the olden days when nobody knew I existed I posted my recipe for pickled beets or beetroot, depending upon what you call these globes of goodness. Let’s have a little recipe redux so I can share it again because these are truly good. I love roasting the little beets and then letting them cool until I can slip the peel off without losing my fingerprints. I can never do this without eating one.
I also have a secret. It’s possible to make pickled beets or pickled beetroot without much effort at all. In most large supermarkets you can buy a commercial sized can of baby beets and it’s job nearly done. You will sacrifice only a little bit of flavor plus the knowledge that you didn’t do everything from scratch.
Hoo ha, that has never bothered me at all. It’s the pickling liquid that makes the pickles and that’s where I spend my time.
I put the jars in the dishwasher and make the pickling liquid. When the jars are nearly done I put the canned beets in a big pot and bring just to the boil so I can put hot beets in a hot jar and cover with hot liquid. No glass breaking in my kitchen allowed.
Place the covers on the jars and process in a hot water bath for 30 minutes and then place the jars on layers of newspaper to cool overnight. Any that don’t seal properly, put them in the refrigerator to eat first and the rest can go nicely in the pantry but refrigerate after opening.
I love a spinach salad with slices of fresh orange, feta cheese and pickled beets including the onions. The dressing I like to use is some leftover orange juice from the slices mixed with a bit of the pickled beet juice and I’m a happy woman.
- 8 pints beets (beetroot)
- 2 onions sliced thinly (you can leave these out but seriously, don't)
- 2 Cups Sugar
- 2 Cups Water
- 2 Cups White Vinegar
- 1 Tablespoon Cinnamon
- 1 Teaspoon Ground Cloves
- 1 Teaspoon Allspice
- ½ Teaspoon Salt
- Place all ingredients into a pot and bring to a boil for 5 minutes.
- Strain to remove the floaty stuff on top.
- Pour into a large measuring cup to make it easier to fill the jars.
- When the liquid has cooled just a little, fill the jars to ½ inch from the top.
- Wipe rims clean
- Place covers and rings on jars
- Place in a water bath for 30 minutes
- Remove from hot water and place on layers of newspaper and leave for 24 hours to cool
Your pickled beets are gorgeous Maureen! Bet they taste as good as they look. Thanks for sharing your process.
Tandy | Lavender and Lime says
oh my, I have always wanted to make my own and yours look amazing!
Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella says
We’re on the same wavelength Maureen. I’ve been madly pickling today too! I have beetroot juice on my fingers but I’m making something quite different! 😛
Can’t wait to see what you’re cooking up!
My mom used to can pickled beets and bread and butter pickles! You may have just inspired me to give canning a try! Your salad looks AMAZING!
That’s all I pickle too. I need to stretch my pickle prowess. 🙂
Both my grandmothers had Alzheimer’s and it was such a difficult thing. Like you we learned to not hang on to the bad moments and to treasure the good ones. It’s so hard. So very, very hard. XO I love pickled beets so much. 🙂
It’s much easier if I don’t take any offense to her anger. I just tell myself it’s a disease and she doesn’t mean it. …and she doesn’t, I know that. The old Joan would never be unkind to her family. It’s exhausting though. 🙂
Gourmet Getaways says
I agree with you, Maureen. It’s a matter of sacrificing flavour by purchasing commercially available pickled beets (or anything for that matter!) or find a little time and get the best of home-made stuff!
I’m really not a beet fan unless (and this is true) they are served in a salad with feta – and the orange would make it even better. A salad like this is the only way I eat it now but my husband loves beets.
I’d love to give these a go – but what does 8 pints of beets look like? How many tins is that please? Salad looks fab – feta and beetroot are meant to be together.
Tricia @ Saving room for dessert says
Love this recipe Maureen. My husband adores pickled beets and so do I. Especially on a salad. Glad Rob in on the road to recovery. You truly have a full plate.
Abbe @ This is How I Cook says
What a beautiful beet recipe! I am trying to get into canning. Glad you are handling this well. I feel for you,
You’re a wonderful daughter-in-law for taking on so much of the care and worry of your two oldsters on and shouldn’t let yourself dwell on the daily dramas when you’re no longer there. As to the pickling, getting help from peeled beets isn’t a biggie. The rest of the process is ‘scratch’ enough and the finished jars are beautiful.
Serena |Serena Bakes Simply From Scratch says
I’m pinning this! I can’t wait to make it! I love pickled beets! So sorry to hear about the Alzheimer’s it’s one of my worst fears and such a horrible disease.
John@Kitchen Riffs says
I love pickled beets! Rarely make them though, and I should — they’re magnificent in salads. Or just all on their own. Glad Rob is doing well. So sad about Joan — that’s so difficult to deal with, but it sounds like you have a handle on it.
Vicky & Ruth- May I Have That Recipe says
I love pickled beets and these look delicious!
You do not sound awful at all. You sound like a caring woman to me. Taking care of aging parents is hard. I think you have shown remarkable patience. And some folks just can’t be pleased. It is them (her) – not you.
Love your beets!
Rachel (Rachel's Kitchen NZ) says
I love beetroot – haven’t pickled/preserved them for ages – this might just give me some inspiration.
Lizzy (Good Things) says
Yummy Maureen… I haven’t made pickled beetroot for years! (Peter can’t stand things like that, unlike my ex husband). Alheimer’s is a cruel disease indeed, as is any mental disability. Tragic to finish one’s life with it… Joan is very fortunate to have you and John caring for her.
The Egyptian pickled beets are salty but I guess yours are sweet looking at the 2 cups of sugar you’ve added. This is so new to me.
American style pickled beets are sweet pickles. Not salty at all. 🙂
Hotly Spiced says
I love pickled beetroot and have to have it in a burger – I’m so Australian! Beets are such a good price at the moment and I have some organic ones on the kitchen bench so you’ve inspired me to pickle them today and we’ll have them for dinner with roast lamb. I’m pleased to hear Rob is doing well but as for your MIL – what can be done! Like you say, dementia is a cruel disease xx
Mary Frances says
Maureen this idea is brilliant, such innovation! I’m also glad to see Rob is doing better and I’m wishing you and your family all the best.
InTolerant Chef says
I adore beetroot, and your pickles look lovely! I have more mainly juiced, but love them baked as well x
Alicia@ eco friendly homemaking says
You have made me want to try my hand at pickling beets now! Yours look awesome!
Joanne T Ferguson says
G’day! Your pickled beetroot look and sound terrific Maureen!
It is never very nice when oldies simply wear out in one way or another! HUGS today!
Hi Maureen, perfect timing for this recipe to be posted, looking to pickle some beets myself. Thank you!
Maureen, you are a woman after my own heart. I’m an absolute beetroot lover, perhaps something left over from my Polish upbringing where beets made into all sorts of delicious sides and salads. My Mum makes pickled capsicum this way. And pumpkin. But never beets. I must try!
PS my thoughts go out to you, but you are right, there’s no point fretting, is there?
Laura (Tutti Dolci) says
You make it sound so easy and your salad looks so good!
Never tried pickled beets! But I must say, I’m inspired.
Love beetroots, are one of our favorite salad.. especially during the winter. You pickled ones are looking really great.
David Crichton says
Homemade beets are to die for, Maureen. I should make a batch for the rest of summer.
sue/the view from great island says
Beet fanatic here…and I’ve never tried pickling them, these look fabulous!
Emma @ Bake Then Eat says
You are right Alzheimer’s is a cruel disease, and you seem to be handling it well, it must be heartbreaking to have to watch someone you love go through that. On a lighter note I love pickling my veggies it so much more fun then buying them I love the way you do it I shall have to give it a go 😀
Vicki Bensinger says
This is a great recipe. I’ve never made pickled beets and what I love is I have all these ingredients on hand right now – except the beets! I can’t wait to make these. Love your salad!
Carol at Wild Goose Tea says
Yes Alzheimer is cruel. My mom was in the throes of it at 58 and didn’t make it to her 62nd birthday.
Pickled beets are always popular as condiment and additions to salads. I just purely love the color of them Veggie jewels.
sherry mackay from sherryspickings says
so sorry to hear about your MIL. what a terribly unfair disease it is on all the family. love the beetroots. do you mean you can take the canned ones out of their liquid and put them into the home made liquid ? oh and yes -8 pints? what is that please? 🙂
4 1/2 litres? I know I should tell you in grams but I’m clueless. 🙂 8 pints converts to 4 1/2 litres.
and yes, right out of the can, heat, drain off the liquid, put in the jar with the onions and pour in the pickling liquid.
Nami | Just One Cookbook says
I’m a big fan of beets! Love to pickle beets one day. Your salad looks refreshing and perfect for hot summer here in Japan. I can eat these beets every meal! 🙂
Thalia @ butter and brioche says
thanks for sharing another great recipe Maureen! love pickled beetroot.. definitely see myself recreating this recipe. thanks for the inspiration!
I love pickled beets but have never made them. You make it look easy…thanks for sharing!
Heike Herrling says
Oh I love pickled beetroots – it’s one of my favourite things. Just adds so much punch to a salad.
Rob and Joan are lucky to have you in their lives.
Bam's Kitchen says
I know this is a very difficult time for you taking care of the elderly. They say this is the most stressful time of our lives where we have to take care of our own family and our parents too. Take a deep breath or maybe 2 and bless you for your patience. Love beet roots too and so glad you dug this one up from the archives. Don’t forget to take care of yourself too! BAM
Alzheimers is a terrible disease 🙁
However, the pickled beets are divine.
The Squishy Monster says
I would especially love these on a salad too! Love that lush ruby color.
Chris @ The Café Sucré Farine says
I just had someone ask me for a good pickled beet recipe. Now I know where to send them as I’ve never made them. Your salad looks wonderful, a yummy combination!
Lea Ann (Cooking On The Ranch) says
Every Fall I spend an afternoon and pickle a bunch of beets. I love, love, love them. I need to start putting some of my reserve on salads. So pretty. Rob and Joan are so very lucky to have you. What an ordeal. :/
Mary O'Brien says
We were making beets on the same day except I roasted mine in a salt crust. Messy but do good! I saved a few beets for pickling too.
What lovely baby beets look so good.
I know alzheimer is really sad and difficult:(
Thanks Maureen! We love beets and I just happen to have local beet ready to be dealt with! Oh did I mention, we LOVE pickled beets!
I feel bad about your MIL…..it’s really cruel. What an absolute pleasure the beetroot pickle is! Yummm.
My grandmother had Alzheimer’s….so sorry, sweet friend. I’ve wanted to make pickled beets for quite some time. Can’t wait to try this!
Claire @ Simply Sweet Justice says
Recently, my little sister has been praising the yumminess of beets to me. I’ve never liked them, but truth be told, that may be because I never ate them much growing up. When I studied abroad in Australia, it was so surprising to me that beetroot would go on burgers! 😉 So sorry to hear about Rob and Joan — keeping you all in my thoughts and prayers. You are one mighty strong woman, my friend!
shashi @ runninsrilankan says
First – it doesn’t make you sound awful that you don’t let Joan’s tantrums bug you – in fact – you are doing the right thing! My dad has suffered from dementia for the last couple of years, but these last 6 months it has gotten very bad – he forgets stuff and repeats stuff and sometimes makes no sense at all and a hospice nurse told us that keeping a cool head is the best way to handle it, because it’s not about us – but about him.
Second, Maureen – I LURVE beets!!! I cannot believe you came up with such a fragrant preserving liquid with allspice and cloves and cinnamon – WOW!
Oh, yum….I love this! Beautiful pics, and looks so easy. I haven’t had pickled beets in ages. It brings back many childhood memories when my mom made them. She would save the picking liquid and add peeled, hard-boiled eggs to it. Good memories. Thanks, 🙂
Kiran @ KiranTarun.com says
You are such a caring daughter in law. On the other hand, love pickled beets! So tasty!!
This is one of the essential ingredients in Kiwi Burger and I love it, now I know how to make them
Krissie - Pearls of Style says
They’re lucky to have you looking out for them Maureen – glad to hear he’s out of the hospital. These beets sound lovely, I’m a big fan of anything pickled!
Krissie x – http://pearlsofstyle.blogspot.com.au
The Wimpy Vegetarian says
It is in fact the pickling juice that makes pickled beets so wonderful – I totally agree. Just wanted to add a note on Alzheimer’s too, Maureen. My mom died with it, and I learned at some point along the journey what you’ve learned. You can’t react to every upset; every drama that gets acted out on center stage. If you do, it will wear you out emotionally. Completely. She passed away many years ago now, in 2002, months before I met my now husband, and it remains by far the most difficult thing I’ve weathered in my life. It was also the first time I realized so strongly what yoga could do for my peace of mind. There was such a difference in how I reacted to situations if I’d gone to a yoga class that day. Night and day. Best wishes to you and your family.
Glamorous Glutton says
I love beetroot, but really don’t like the bought stuff and tend to but the unpickled beets. Perhaps it’s just that I’ve bought the wrong ones?! Now I’m going to give yours a go, bet they’re delicious. GG
I don’t like the bought stuff either but pickled, I couldn’t tell which ones I’d roasted in the oven and which ones I’d poured out of a tin.
Helene D'Souza says
beets are very common and popular in India. It’s actually surprising that I have never seen pickled beets there because folks there are pickle freaks. ^.^ I love the color beets give the food, although I have never been a fan of the flavor but I always treasure the health benefits first, so I can imagine making your pickle sometimes in the future Maureen.
Years ago (or may be at my age it’s eons ago) I had a Polish step mother-in-law that once served me what she termed pickled beets & they weren’t bad and were her stepson’s favorite so I made them her way which was 2 Tbsp. sugar and 2 Tbsp. cider vinegar per can of beets….
Maureen these are absolutely awesome! I never thought of spices…Not only are they orgasmic but they are highly addictive where I am concerned!
Thank you so much! Have a very blessed day! It’s not on the same page but thanks also for the tomato chili jam recipe…. 🙂
Margo! Thanks so much for writing – comments like this help on days I wonder why I do this. 🙂 I love these beets and when I realized they worked for canned beets just as well as freshly roasted beets, I always have some in the pantry.