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Toledo Farmers Market

July 5, 2013
By Dawn Troutner - Toledo Market Master , Toledo Chronicle, Tama News-Herald

Market Report for June 28th

With the holiday coming up, I will be writing this market report before the Toledo Farmers' Market. I hope to have the regular vendors along with a few more. I am not sure exactly what will be at market. I am sure there will be plenty of kolaches, rollick, bread, cookies, pies, and various bakery items. There will also be jams, jellies, fresh and dried herbs, green onions, rhubarb, turnips, broccoli, and beets. Be sure to visit the Toledo Farmers' Market on Friday nights from 5-7pm on the east side of the Courthouse square.

Did you know that beets not only give you delicious colorful roots, but nutritious greens as well? Beets are related to spinach and chard. Beets were once called "blood turnips" because of their bright red juice, but beets can also be golden, white, or striped. I am not a beet fan, but the golden beets I grow are sure delicious looking.

Article Photos

Dawn Troutner

Red table beets produce edible greens in 35 days, followed by round or cylindrical roots a month later. Leaves from most red beets have red stems and leaf veins similar to red leafed chard. White, orange, and golden beets are prized for their mild, nutty flavor. Because they don't bleed red juice these beets are best for roasting with other vegetables. Storage beets are table beet varieties that excel when grown for fall harvest followed by winter storage in your refrigerator or root cellar. Mangel beets, often called forage beets or mangel-wurzel beets, grow huge roots weighing form 5 to 20 pounds each that can be used as livestock fodder in winter.

If you have ever tried to peel a beet, you know how difficult it is to peel a beet. If you scrub the beet clean of dirt and fibrous threads, the peel is edible. Unless you are serving the beet raw, such as grated over a salad, the best way to peel a beet is to cook it first. The peel should pull or rub off much more easily after it is cooked.

The root is what we traditionally think of as a beet. To prevent them from bleeding, leave 2 inches of the stem when you cut them from the greens. Beets are dense and take a long time to cook. The beet greens are often discarded, but they are completely edible. Only baby beets tend to have small, tender leaves suitable for salads. After a through cleaning the beet greens can be steamed or sauted, much like Swiss chard. If the stems are small and not too fibrous, they can be eaten together with the leaves. You may ask, ":How do I know if the stem is fibrous?" Break the stem in half, if it breaks clean it is tender enough to eat without removing the stems. If fibers keep it from breaking apart, you are best off cutting and chopping the stems.

A ? cup of beets is a good source of folate and manganese. It is also a source of riboflavin. A ? cup of cooked beet greens is an excellent source of vitamin K, vitamin A, and vitamin C. It is also a good source of manganese, potassium, and riboflavin.

If you want to use you juicer and try some beet juice, beets can detox you not only from inside, but from the outside too. Beet juice acts as a natural tonic for dry tired skin that is losing its elasticity. Blend one beet root with ? cup of cabbage, set some juice aside. Mix 1 Tbsp of mayo or olive oil with beets and cabbage, apply this to your face. There you go a natural skin refresher. See you at market and look for the red.



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