Around this time of year our fridge is full of beetroot, courtesy of my Dad’s allotment. If you don’t grow it yourself, beetroot is available pre-cooked in supermarkets and now is a great time to eat it. Often called a superfood, beetroot is rich in nutrients including calcium, B-carotene (which is converted into vitamin A), folate (naturally occurring folic acid) as well as some vitamin C, iron and zinc and several other nutrients. It is fairly high in sugars giving it a sweet taste but it also contains a good amount of fibre.
Eating beetroot has been associated with many health benefits such as antioxidant and immune-boosting properties, helping to maintain a healthy gut, supporting the liver and helping to reducing blood pressure.
As far as taste goes, beetroot tends to be a bit like marmite, you either love it or hate it, but given that it is packed full of nutrients and it grows well in this country, it is well worth adding it to your diet in the summer.
Excellent in salads (but best kept in a separate pot if you are taking a salad to work as it will turn everything pink!), it also works well in chocolate cake and brownies. The leaves are nutritious and can be used in salads.
Beetroot goes really well with tomato which is what goes into this really simple salad.
One medium beetroot per person
2-3 tomatoes per person
Handful of fresh parsley (optional)
White wine vinegar
Slice the beetroot.
Slice the tomato.
Arrange on a plate.
Drizzle with olive oil and vinegar (to taste).
Sprinkle with parsley.
Serve with some protein and some carbs, such as bread and cheese, grilled mackerel and boiled new potatoes, or grilled chicken and jacket potato.