Beets

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Pauld
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Beets

Postby Pauld » Wed Mar 07, 2012 8:12 pm

Can anyone please tell me when beetroot was first eaten? I understand that the pretty red veined leaves were often used as decoration, but (if my info is right) this was long before the roots were eaten. Thanks in advance.



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Bittersweet
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Re: Beets

Postby Bittersweet » Thu Mar 08, 2012 4:46 am

I don't know the answer as to time, etc. but I have a theory about the term "beets". It is only my idea and I've never investigated:
A beet is a root vegetable (tunrip, carrot swede, anything like that) with the condition that it's "green leafy top" can be harvested and eaten as a separate entity prior to, or at the same time as, the harvesting of the root as a separate entity.

I hope that makes some sense.

If that's an acceptable idea, the people who know far more than me about these things, may be able to come up with the first root vegetable known to be used that had both root and top available, good to eat, for people ('cos of course cattle, etc. can eat nearly anything as far as I can tell)?

Best I :? can suggest really


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Paul D
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Re: Beets

Postby Paul D » Sun Mar 11, 2012 11:25 pm

Thanks BS. I was under the impression that nothing would go to waste, so if folk were eating beetrrot leaves, would thay not also have eaten the roots? Hope someone out there knows.



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Bittersweet
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Re: Beets

Postby Bittersweet » Mon Mar 12, 2012 6:51 am

I should imagine so. Beet Root, any colours!

I saw a programme on ITV Aide Edmundson doing a foodie tour of Britain I think and he was talking about them OR I'm getting confused and it was Raymond Blanc on BBC in his most recent series so you could try iplayer?
I'll see if I can find it and link it to this thread.

But there's all colours, like with carrots, yellow, white, purple, etc. Then there's sugar beet and so on. I mean mangleworsel is probably beet strictly speaking....assuming you accept my definition of course :wink:


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Bittersweet
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Re: Beets

Postby Bittersweet » Mon Mar 12, 2012 6:57 am

Couldn't find it on i player but try this

http://www.raymondblanc.com/

:D


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Bittersweet
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Re: Beets

Postby Bittersweet » Mon Mar 12, 2012 6:58 am

Oh, and for anyone that cares my name is Adele...sounds slightly better than Bittersweet perhaps but a good description of me :wink:


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Sophia
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Re: Beets

Postby Sophia » Mon Mar 12, 2012 7:33 pm

You need to buy (from Historic Management Associates Ltd) or order on inter-library loan the following:

Cottage Garden Plants 1580-1660, Volumes 1 + 2 by Stuart Peachey, Stuart Press 1996, ISBN 1-85804-079-5 + ISBN 1-85804-080-9.

It covers the latter part of Kentwell's period but as long as you avoid any plants that are mentioned as recent introductions. It would also be worth querying this with the Kentwell gardeners and kitchen people some of whom are very knowlegeable.

In addition you also need to start looking period cook books (Forme of Cury on Inglish, Proper New Book of Cookery, etc.) to get a feel for the different ingredients and how they were used. While these are for the better sorts they also include plenty of basic recipes for vegetable based dishes, particular if you ignore the expensive spices (saffron, ginger, lots of pepper, etc.)


aka Thomasin Chedzoy, Tailor at Kentwell Hall

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Paul D
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Re: Beets

Postby Paul D » Mon Mar 12, 2012 9:59 pm

Cheers Adele (yeah - better than BS).x



Bittersweet wrote:Couldn't find it on i player but try this

http://www.raymondblanc.com/

:D



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Paul D
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Re: Beets

Postby Paul D » Mon Mar 12, 2012 10:02 pm

[Thanks for this Sophia. I do have a number of Tudor receipt books but am struggling to find mention of beetroots. I have jus discovered Stuart Paechey and the HMA (what a useful resource). Will take your advice and ask gardeners. Hope you are feeling more rested now after the w/e. Bests to Peter. X


quote="Sophia"]You need to buy (from Historic Management Associates Ltd) or order on inter-library loan the following:

Cottage Garden Plants 1580-1660, Volumes 1 + 2 by Stuart Peachey, Stuart Press 1996, ISBN 1-85804-079-5 + ISBN 1-85804-080-9.

It covers the latter part of Kentwell's period but as long as you avoid any plants that are mentioned as recent introductions. It would also be worth querying this with the Kentwell gardeners and kitchen people some of whom are very knowlegeable.

In addition you also need to start looking period cook books (Forme of Cury on Inglish, Proper New Book of Cookery, etc.) to get a feel for the different ingredients and how they were used. While these are for the better sorts they also include plenty of basic recipes for vegetable based dishes, particular if you ignore the expensive spices (saffron, ginger, lots of pepper, etc.)[/quote]



Pauld
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Re: Beets

Postby Pauld » Tue Mar 13, 2012 3:54 pm

Just come across my old Kentwell Receipts Book which mentions the cooking of beetroots but sadly without a date.



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Re: Beets

Postby SteveC » Tue Mar 13, 2012 10:11 pm

The Closet of Sir Kenelm Digby, Knight, Opened published 1669, but written earlier, mentions eating both roots and leaves of beets, but he isn't always polite about them

The beets have no very good taste, peradventure it were best leave them out


Steve



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Bittersweet
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Re: Beets

Postby Bittersweet » Wed Mar 14, 2012 5:20 am

I'm not surprised...possibly very bitter I would think.
Remove the niceties of the varieties such a beetroot, beets as such are often associated with the cattle fodder type: pretty much swede shape but usually much bigger. Chopped down in a big machine on a farmyard and fed to cows, sheep and such like over the winter months. the green tops having been harvested and fed to the animals maybe a month before, possibly by allowing the animals strip graze. then the only work in feed production is the lifting chopping. the lifting will have been made easier by the trampling animals loosening the beets from the soil.


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