For several weeks I have received beautiful and tender bunches of beets, along with a handful of green beans, in my CSA bag from La Nay Ferme. I have generally bought beets in the grocery store and they have often been tough to peel, but these fresh, organic beets are tender and easy to peel and chop, and the flavor is superior. The beets come with beet tops intact, but I never throw the greens away; they are delicious and healthy and I save them for quick sautés, soups, or pasta. One of the best ways to cook beets is to roast them, because the sugars concentrate and they become very sweet. This is a simple preparation and looks lovely on a plate. While the beets are roasting, boil the beans until crisp tender, then combine and season. The beets can be roasted several days ahead and added to vegetables as needed.
Roasted Beets with Green Beans
6 medium beets, peeled and diced
2-3 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1/4 tsp. kosher salt
1/8 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
3-4 sprigs fresh thyme or to taste
1-1/2 c. green beans, trimmed
1/2 tsp. zatar (or a mixture of dried thyme, oregano and sesame seeds)
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with foil. Place diced beets on the baking sheet. Sprinkle beets with 1 Tbsp. olive oil, salt and pepper, and fresh thyme. Roast for 50-55 minutes or until fork tender. While the beets are roasting, fill a 3-quart saucepan with water and bring to a boil. Add a pinch of kosher salt and the green beans. Cook, uncovered, for 6-7 minutes until beans are crisp tender. Drain beans and run under cold water to stop the cooking. In a serving bowl combine beets and green beans. Add 1-2 Tbsp. olive oil and the zatar. Taste. You may need to add a bit of salt. Toss. Serves 4.