Fire and Ice Pickled Beetroot

Tuesday 28 July 2015

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I wish I had a pound for every jar of pickled beetroot (beets) that I put up when my family was growing up.   I'd be a very rich woman.  I used to put up tons of fruits and vegetables every year . . .  jams and jellies, pickles and relishes . . .  chutneys and fruit butters.   Dill pickles were always a favourite along with green tomato chow . . .  but I don't mind admitting my favourite of it all were the pickled beetroot.  I LOVE PICKLED BEETROOT!

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Of course with there just being two of us in the house now, its just not practical these days to do all that preserving, but I do get a hankering from time to time for some home pickled beetroot.   Oh, I know I can buy it in the shops . . .  but it's just not the same.

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I love, LOVE this recipe because you end up with just one jar of lovely pickled beets . . .  and you start off by roasting them.   Did you know  that roasting beetroot enhances this lovely vegetables natural sweetness?  It does . . .  I love roasted beetroot.

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The brine for these is a simple one  . . .  red wine vinegar, sugar and water flavoured with salt, cinnamon, cloves, peppercorns, star anise and a goodly pinch of crushed red chillies . . .  depending on how much fire you want in your ice.   I prefer less, but if you like spicy things you can certainly add more.

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Beautiful on their own with grilled meats and fish  . . .  or in sandwiches, or  (my personal favourite) in lovely salads with goats cheese and plenty of salad greens!  Mmmmm . . .  so good.   I just adore these.

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*Fire and Ice Roasted Pickled Beetroot*
Makes one pint jar

These are a delicious mix of sweet, sour and hot.  You can control the heat by the amount of chili flakes you add.  These need to pickle in the refrigerator for 3 to 5 days before using. 

6 medium beetroot
225ml of good quality red wine vinegar
120g of golden caster sugar
1 1/2 tsp coarse salt
225ml of water
6 to 8 whole cloves
5 whole peppercorns
2 pieces of star anise
1 cinnamon stick broken in half
1 nice pinch of chili flakes  (according to your taste) 

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Preheat the oven to 200*C/400*F/ gas mark 6.  Take two large pieces of aluminium foil.  Place them crosswise to each other.  Place the beetroots in the centre and bring up the edges around to enclose the beetroots.  Squeeze tightly shut.  Place them into the preheated oven and roast them for 50 to 60 minutes until tender.  Remove from the oven, unwrap and allow to cool until you can handle them comfortably.  Peel them and cut into wedges.

Place the beetroot wedges, cloves, star anise and cinnamon stick into a clean lidded one pint jar with a lid.   Measure the vinegar, water, sugar, salt and chili flakes into a saucepan.  Bring to the boil.  Pour over the beetroots in the jar. Screw on the lid.   Allow to come to room temperature and then refrigerate for 3 to 5 days before using.   Delicious.


  1. Never added great is that? Thanks Marie.

  2. I like that it only makes one jar Monique! And the spice is nice. Xoxo

  3. I think the beets look amazing dear Marie!

  4. This is one of my favourite preserves, too. I can't wait to try roasting them instead of boiling - a neat idea.

  5. I was craving these today! How funny that your post is about pickled beets. I looked for some beets at the Farmer's Market but no one had them. I also used to pickle a dozen jars of these every summer and now only need a jar or two. Thanks for sharing!

  6. Thanks Gloria! They are very hard to photograph! xoxo

    Thanks Chris! Roasting really enhances their natural sweetness! I had all I could do to not eat them before pickling them! I was sorely tempted! xoxo

    Thanks Leonora! I hope you will give these a go and that you enjoy them! xoxo

  7. I've just put these in the fridge to mature over the next few days. I'm really looking forward to trying them as I love beetroot.

    Like you, I did tons of jam making, pickling and fruit preserves when I had a growing family. I learned it all from when I was a child and my mother's constant work to keep a large family fed. We made mustard pickles, chutneys, pickled onions, pickled green tomatoes, pickled cucumbers, tomato ketchup, different jams and marmelades (fig, quince, apricot, plum, peach and passionfruit, orange, lemon) and jars of apricots and peaches in sugar syrup. Our cellar was full of these and it meant we had food all year round, plus nothing went to waste. We even dried fruit to make our own sultanas, currants, raisins, dried apricots and sun dried tomatoes - I remember all those trays out on the shed roof on a hot summer day... I wonder if people still do that these days - it was a lovely communal activity and I enjoyed working together to get it all done. Lovely memories.


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