Wednesday, January 21, 2009

In Which I Am "Beet-en"

I love beets. I truly do. I make a mean beet salad that even beet-o-phobes will eat. I haven't had beets in a while, so when I saw this recipe on The New York Times site, I thought "Yum!"

I buy some beets. They seemed to be on special and were packaged a bit differently. Still, beets are cheap: one of Moscow's few bargains.


The interesting angle in this recipe is that the beets are peeled and diced before roasting. I peeled myself a beet. It looked wrong:


More alarming, it smelled wrong. It smelled . . . earthy and all. But with a familiar piquancy that is decidedly un-beet-like. I couldn't quite put my finger on it . . .


I call The Spouse.

"What's R-E-D-softsign-K-A?" I ask him. "Is it some kind of beet?"

"Um, nooooo," he says, not unkindly. "It's radish."


Radish?

Fuck.

I can't roast a radish.

"Do you think I can roast them?" I float the idea to The Spouse.

"No." He's pragmatic. "It's a radish."

Internet to the rescue.

I google "radish recipes" and come up with a few salad ideas. Radish and Fennel Salad looks good. I have a bulb of fennel. I even have a new food processor. Slicing veggies extra thin will be a breeze.

This I do.

I take the lid off the processor bowl.

The radish fumes make my eyes water.

I try a slice.

It is thick and woody and HOT. And not in a good way. Like horseradish hot. These are mutant radishes. What, do they come from Chernobyl?

I pick the slices of radish out of the bowl, toss the fennel with olive oil, and stick it in the oven to roast. At least I have a Plan B.

I was going to roast some carrots to go along with the fennel until I opened that package. I think the carrots came from Ukraine, too.

13 comments:

kate said...

Packaged veggies--always a risk. Sure, you get to skip the line by the sticker machine, but once you open them...

Luna said...

HA! And double HA!! Finally! I'm not the only one.

I've bought "parsnips". They were radishes. I've bought the "beets" (all because your salad) and they were radishes. And this was at rynok--they weren't even packaged!

In this cruel world, if it looks like a duck, walks like duck, and quacks like a duck . . . it's probably a radish.

Oh . . . what I would do for a bulb of fennel right now...

Tina in CT said...

You crack me up!

Svetlana said...

That is sooo funny!!! It is sooo Russia..
It remind me of my home.... i do miss it. My family still in Moscow and they use that store " Sed'moj continent"
Sveta

Dawn said...

OMG you are funny, they must have been bloody giant radish!! I can just see you peeling them and thinking what the ???
how was the final dish?
To be honest I probably would have fed them to the garbage bin!

Anonymous said...

sounds like you encountered a black radish - this link says they're more medicinal than edible!

http://www.dietobio.com/aliments/en/radish.html

I love beets too... nature can be cruel! ... Jennie

The Expatresse said...

Jennie: Thanks for the link. That is a riot! Indeed, the label says they are "black radishes."

If I would only READ before I throw stuff in the cart. I know the word for "beets."

valentina said...

So I wonder what would happen if you diced them, sprinkled them with EVOO and roasted them with a little herbes de Provence? Why not try? They can't get much worse!

I am curious...xov

The Expatresse said...

Another very funny discussion about these . . . these . . . THINGS!

http://www.wsc.co.uk/component/option,com_fireboard/Itemid,35/id,143292/catid,28/func,fb_pdf/

Tina in CT said...

What did you ever do about the cooking? Did you eat them?

The Expatresse said...

Horrors! No. I haven't done anything with them. They are still lurking in my fridge.

Real Estate Feast--South Florida real estate blog said...

Why not go ahead and grind them up like horse radish and make a little hot condiment? Just a bit of vinegar and voila! Will got hotter the longer you grind it.

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