beetroot curry

Beetroot Curry

Introduction To Beetroot Curry :

Beetroot Curry is a very healthy, simple and easy to make, South Indian curry. It can be made in either diced or grated form. Beetroot curry is an absolute delight owing to its colour and can be made very quickly. It doesn’t need much preparation or too many ingredients. Beetroot curry has the sweetness of beets and coconut (if added), the heat from the green chillies or red chillies (added as whole or powdered form) and the flavours of the spices. However, its flavour may be further enhanced by additions of some extra spices, onions, ginger garlic, or by adding shredded fresh coconut.`

Beetroot – The Vegetable:

Beetroot is a vegetable consumed worldwide due to its varied nutritional benefits. The pinkish-red beetroot, either loved or hated, can be cooked into a variety of tasty dishes. Beetroot, commonly known as beet, is a vibrant and versatile type of vegetable, known for its earthy flavour and aroma. It is also considered to be a superfood because of its nutritional profile. Beetroot also has use in food colouring and medicine. It can be used anywhere between raw to heavily processed. Beetroots can be used in several ways: raw, boiled, steamed, roasted, and pickled.

beetroot

Image by Tracy Lundgren from Pixabay

History Of Beetroot:

 Beetroot has evolved from the wild sea beet, which grew in Africa, the Middle East and Europe. The Ancient Greeks cultivated beetroot around 300 BC. They didn’t use the roots but feasted on the leaves with lentils and beans.  They recommended beets for binding wounds, cleansing the blood and treating digestive problems.  They did however respect the roots as they were highly valued as medicine, not food and offered it to the sun God Apollo.

The Romans ate roots but mainly for medicinal purposes. They used it as a laxative or to cure fever.

 In Victorian times, beetroot was used as natural hair colour, as also bringing colour to an otherwise colourless diet and as a sweet ingredient in desserts.

Beets weren’t always a deep red colour. Beets in Greek and Roman times were either black or white as opposed to the red, white and yellow varieties available today. In addition to the culinary uses of the greens and roots, beets were used to create a form of sugar. This gave rise to products such as beet beer, molasses and other beet sugar-containing foods.

beetroots

Beets first arrived in the United States with European immigrants in the early 19th century. By then, the beet had evolved into its modern-day bulbous shape and deep red hue. With their earthy flavour and vibrant colour, beets now are available, used and enjoyed worldwide.

Nutritional Benefits Of Beetroot :

Beetroot is a superfood, a treasure trove of nutrients, low in calories yet high in vitamins and minerals including fiber, folate and vitamin C. Consumption of beetroot helps to keep blood pressure in check, often used by athletes as they have anti-inflammatory properties, improves digestive health, anti-cancer properties, help to lose weight, acts as a blood purifier. However, people with low BP, kidney stones, and unstable sugar levels, may want to avoid consumption of beets.

My Recipe My Story :

The recipe I am sharing below is a typical South Indian version of the curry I make at home. Fortunately, my kids like it, so I try to include it in their diet at least once a week or two. I like to pressure cook the beets as it is, without cutting or peeling. Once they are cooked and cooled is when I remove the skin and dice them into cubes for this curry. This keeps the nutrient value of the vegetable fully intact.

beetroot curry

Beetroot Curry – Recipe

Beetroot Curry Ingredients :

  • Beetroots – 3-4 medium-sized – cooked, peeled and diced
  • Chana Daal – 1tsp
  • Urad Daal – 1tsp
  • Mustard Seeds – 1tsp
  • Curry leaves – 8-10 leaves
  • Oil – 2tbsp
  • Asafoetida – 1 pinch
  • Turmeric Powder – 1tsp
  • Red Chilly Powder – 1tsp (according to spice levels)
  • Salt to taste

How To Make Beetroot Curry :

  • Step 1 – Wash the beetroots thoroughly and place them in the pressure cooker in a wide plate or vessel without water. Pressure cook for 3 whistles.
beetroots
  • Step 2 – Once the steam is completely released from the pressure cooker, remove the beets and leave them aside to cool down.
beetroots
  • Step 3 – Next, peel the skin and dice the beets into small cubes.
diced beetroots
  • Step 4 – In a kadhai/pan, heat the oil and add chana daal, urad daal and mustard seeds. Let the mustard seeds splutter. Then add hing, turmeric and curry leaves and fry them for about 2 seconds.
tempering
  • Step 5 – Add in all the diced beetroot pieces and mix alongwith the tempering. Then add salt and red chilli powder. Let it all cook for some more time so that the beets get completely coated with the tempering ingredients and dry powders.
beetroot curry

Note :

If you like to add more flavour to the curry, you may add curry powder or some coriander powder, just to further enhance the flavour of the curry. Also, some like to add shredded coconut to the curry. You may do so at the end before switching off the flame, give it a good stir for about a minute. Thats it. Yummy red-coloured beetroot curry is ready to be served alongwith steamed rice and ghee.

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