I think since I was a kid I have loved beets. To be honest I don’t like the actual flavor of a plain beet, but I love seasoned beets. Beets go well with a ton of flavors – balsamic vinaigrette, lemon vinaigrette, Dijon vinaigrette, goat cheese, blue cheese, onions, olives, I love it all.
Growing up, my parents (HAPPY FATHER’S DAY) used to make a beet salad with raw red onions thinly sliced, salt, pepper, Mrs. Dash (a household favorite), and oil and balsamic vinegar. I could smell it being made and always wanted to help. I loved the way the water would turn red from the beets and as we’d peel them my fingertips would turn pink. Beets have always been a part of my life.
Recently I have decided I want to start pickling. I have all of these mason jars and what is better than mason jars for pickling. So, I started with something that appealed to me, and that sounded easy enough – pickled onions. I researched a variety of recipes and got the basic ingredients down – thinly sliced red onions, water, sugar, salt, apple cider vinegar (or white vinegar, or red wine vinegar, but vinegar none the less).
I pickled my onions, and I tasted them the next day, they were still a little too oniony, a little less pickley. So, I let them sit another day. As I was making my beet salad for the family I cook for, I was about to chop my fresh red onion, when I remembered – I have pickled red onions. What a game changer for the beet salad. It adds this beautiful salty acidic taste to this mixture of slightly sweeter beets.
I’m not saying I’ve changed my beet salad forever, but if pickled onions are around I think it’s a must.
To make Pickled Onions:
– 2 QT sized mason jars (or one large one)
– One medium red onion
– 1 cup warm water
– 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
– 2 tsp sugar
– 2 tsp salt
– 2 clove of garlic smashed (one for each jar)
Thinly slice the red onion. In a small pot combine water and vinegar and heat until just warm. Stir sugar and salt in until dissolved. Split the liquid mixture between both mason jars. Divide the onions between the mason jars. Lastly put the piece of smashed garlic in and seal those mason jars up. Place in fridge for at least 24 hours – but I would keep tasting until you find the right amount of time for you. I found that between 2 – 4 days was the prime time to eat mine!
For the Beet Salad
– 3 – 4 Medium Beets (stalks cut off, and tops and bottoms trimmed)
– 2 – 3 Tbs olive oil
– 1 -2 Tbs balsamic vinegar
– A hefty dash of salt and pepper
– A hefty dash of Mrs. Dash
– Pickled onions
For the beet salad boil beets until a knife can pierce through them with ease (about 30 – 45 minutes). Remove from the water and run under cool water as you peel off the skin using your hands. Slice beets in half and then in to thin slices. Place in a nice serving bowl and toss in your favorite seasonings (I used salt, pepper, garlic salt, and Mrs. Dash) along with the olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Lastly add those pickled onions in and toss altogether for a delicious side salad.