What is it?
An golden beet is part of the beet family; the main difference is that they are orange instead of red. It is classified as a root vegetable, more specifically a taproot. Depending on how long they have been growing they can be as small as an egg or as large as a cantaloupe, but typically they are about the size of an orange. They are less sweet than then red beets, but also have a more mellow earthy flavor. I prefer golden beets to the typical red beets.
Where does it grow?
Beets are grown in the ground. They are considered the root of the plant. The leafy greens that grown above ground can be eaten as well as the beet itself. The plant is native to Western Europe and the Mediterranean including northern Africa.
How to eat it?
Beets should be cooked and peeled before eating. The main method for cooking is roasting or boiling.
Selection & Storage:
Beets are considered a winter vegetable, although you can usually find them year round. Select a beet that is firm and medium in size. To store beets remove their greens, so they don’t continue pulling out the nutrients from the beet. The greens can be stored separately for use later up to a few days. Beets on the other hand, will store in the refrigerator up to 4 weeks.
The bright color of beets is due to a nitrogen-containing pigment called betalains. The pigments are water-soluble, which means they will bleed when cooked, bruised, or pierced. To help maintain the color add acid (lemon, vinegar, wine) during the cooking process.