Saturday, March 14, 2009

Beet Soup and Baby corn Surprise!

We have a farm out here that's just chock full of vegetables- and that's something I simply love. This week, the beets outdid themselves and overflowed into our home.

Most chefs profess a love for this radiant vegetable- the color, the ease and versatility. I'm no exception. It's a wonderful healthy way to add color to any dish. My mom and I sometimes add a few of them into our Biriyani. We enjoy eating pink spicy rice, for some reason.

Today I decided to make beet soup. Some people just puree the boiled vegetable and add their seasonings. But one thing that I don't like about beets is their raw smell. So I also cooked the soup for a bit in between pureeing and chilling it.

Chilled Beet Soup

1 large onion
4 medium sized beets
1 or 2 garlic cloves
1 sweet orange-pulp and juice/ 1/4 cup orange juice
Beaten Yogurt, to taste.

Chop each beet into eight and boil them or pressure cook them till soft. Cool and add to that the orange pulp, garlic cloves and some salt. Grind into a smooth paste.

Heat some oil and add the chopped onion. Cook till nicely brown- this imparts more flavor than lightly cooked onion. Add the puree, salt and pepper, cover and cook till nicely thick and the raw smell has gone.

Cool and add the beaten yogurt. How much you add is a matter of taste and color. Transfer to a bowl and refrigerate.

This soup is actually tasty at any stage from when it leaves the stove. Hot soup with no yogurt in it is delicious too! Another possibility is to make this a dip or a spread. Instead of pureeing the boiled beets, simple mash them with a pestle, add sour cream or yogurt and season well. A dash of lime will round it off nicely. For a slightly different flavor, roast the beets instead of boiling them. There are many options :)

Another dish that I personally loved was the Baby corn Surprise. The reason I'm calling it so is because it was just an experiment and came as a complete surprise that it turned out so well! Now, I cannot reveal the recipe as the marinade is my mom's secret- one she uses regularly for fish. Being a vegetarian, I've always wanted to try it on some vegetable and the baby corn looked just right.

And how! The baby corn was perfect- the texture was great and it really went well with the cooked marinade. A perfect bite. I'd encourage anyone to try this with their own fish or meat marinade.

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