Beets Done Simply

MAKES: 4 servings

TIME: About 45 minutes

Faster than Beets Baked in Foil and almost as convenient, but a little messier or at least potentially so.

Other vegetables you can use: turnips, rutabagas, daikon, or parsnips.

Salt

4 large or 8 medium beets, about 11/2 to 2 pounds, with about 1 inch of their tops still on

Variations

To boil. Bring a large pot of water to a boil; salt it. Put the beets in the water, cover the pot, and turn the heat to medium-low. Simmer until the beets can be pierced with a thin-bladed knife, 30 to 45 minutes. Drain and drop into ice water; drain again and peel.

To steam. Put the beets in a steamer above an inch or two of salted water. Cover and cook over steadily bubbling water for about 30 to 45 minutes, until they can be pierced with a thin-bladed knife. Drain and drop into ice water; drain and peel.

To microwave. Put the beets in a microwave-safe plate or shallow bowl with about 2 tablespoons of salted water; cover with a lid. Microwave on high for 6 minutes, shake the container, and continue to microwave at 2-minute intervals, just until they can be pierced with a thin-bladed knife. Drain and drop into ice water; drain and peel.

Use these in Precooked Vegetables with Butter or Oil or any other recipe that calls for cooked beets; or store, refrigerated, for a couple of days before using in any recipe for cooked beets.