This very simple recipe for steamed beets will feel delightfully satisfying on a cool spring or autumn day.
I am thrilled to share it with you because of its elemental simplicity. All you need are beets, ghee, coriander powder, fresh lemon juice, and a sprinkle of salt.
You can use any kind of beet for this recipe. Choose from red beets, golden beets, chiogga (striped) beets, etc.
There are two main methods for steaming the beets. The first is in a steamer basket. The second is right in your saucepan, using a small amount of water.
This second approach is similar to boiling, except that you use much less water, and make use of a lid to steam the beets in place. I use this method a lot.
If you use the right amount of water, and time it just right, you’ll end up with a very small amount of water in the pot, which you can even add to your steamed beets if you like.
Sweet Spiced Ghee
I am delighted to introduce you to the idea of cooking with ghee and spices.
The process I am about to describe can be replicated with many different kinds of spices. The key is always to unlock the potential of your spices by sizzling in healthy fat.
I like ghee, but sometimes I use olive oil, or something else. I talk more about ghee in the next section. If you need to, you can substitute with olive oil for this recipe.
After steaming the beets, you make a little spiced ghee to pour over them.
To make the spiced ghee, you heat up a small amount of ghee in a small skillet, then sizzle in coriander powder for 20-30 seconds.
Sizzling spices in ghee releases their flavor, aroma, and medicinal qualities.
Ghee is a type of clarified butter that I consider to be the number one healthy fat on the planet.
It is certainly number one for gut health.
Ghee contains a large amount of butyric acid, which is food for your colon cells. So ghee is known to be incredibly supportive for digestion, and for gut health.
Unlike most types of oils and fats, ghee is also incredibly light. It has a penetrating quality that supports circulation and deeply hydrates the internal skin and tissues of the body.
At the same time, ghee is not cholesterol forming.
You can also cook with ghee at high temperatures, since it has a very high smoke point.
Ghee is the best fat for working with spices, not to mention it tastes heavenly.
Think of it as caramelized butter, except that there’s no milk solids, and next to no lactose in ghee, since the milk proteins are removed in the process of making ghee.
When you make ghee yourself, you'll see that ghee is pure, golden butterfat.
Why Are Sweet Steamed Beets Good for You?
Beets are sweet, warm, moistening, grounding, and nourishing. They are one of the best vegetables for Vata dosha, and for encouraging these qualities.
Medicinally, beets are helpful to relieve constipation, and supportive to the blood and female reproductive system.
Fresh lemon juice is warming and stimulating to your metabolism, known as your digestive fire in Ayurveda.
The sweet, sour, and salty tastes are highly supportive to vata dosha.
The coriander spice that you’ll use in this recipe tastes a little earthy and sweet, and it has a mild cooling effect, which helps to balance this recipe for Pitta dosha, which is the dosha associated with fire.
Coriander is also supportive for digesting toxins, and promoting a healthy appetite.
Can I Use These Spices for Some Other Vegetable?
Use this technique to flavor butternut squash, carrots, yams, sweet potatoes, celery root, daikon radish, kale. etc.
You could also combine 2-3 vegetables together, such as kale and carrots.
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Recipe for Sweet Spiced Steamed Beets
Prep the beets
- Cut the stem and tips off the beets and use a vegetable peeler to peel them. Chop into bite-sized pieces.
Cook the beets: Choose one of the following 2 methods:
- Steam in the saucepan: Place prepared beets in a saucepan with a fitted lid. Add 1 cup water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, add a pinch of salt, and cover. Cook for 20-25 minutes until beets are tender.
- Steam in a steamer: Place prepared beets in a steamer basket that fits in a pot with a lid. Bring 2 cups water to a boil, and place a steamer basket inside. Reduce heat to low, and cover. Cook for 20-25 minutes until beets are tender.
Prepare Spiced Ghee
- Add ghee to a small skillet on medium-low heat (big enough to hold the beets). After the ghee is hot, add coriander powder, and sizzle for 20-30 seconds to release its flavor and aroma. Do not burn the coriander. It will happen quickly.
- Add steamed beets and a sprinkle of salt. Toss well to coat with spiced ghee. Allow a couple of minutes to reheat the beets if necessary.
Finish the dish
- Transfer to a serving dish. Finish with fresh lemon juice.