Growing up in a Lithuanian family, there was a small group of foods that I had to love to survive, since they constantly appeared on the dinner table: potatoes, cabbage, mushrooms, herring, and beets. Fortunately for me, I loved them all, despite my Mom’s desire to boil everything to death.
One of the many uses for beets, besides soups, was pickling. Pickled beets are an excellent side for any hearty meat dish. (I love ’em with kielbasa or steak!) I add hard-boiled eggs and hunks of onion to the mix because I like them. If you don’t like ’em, leave ’em out and just add more beets.
I combined store-bought already-cooked beets (the brand is called Love Beets) with Chiogga beets that I grew in my own garden and peeled and roasted before pickling.
4 to 8 beets, scrubbed (your favorite variety)
1 cup apple cider vinegar
1 cup water
3 garlic cloves, crushed
3 tablespoons sugar
2 teaspoons whole black peppercorns
1 tablespoon Kosher salt
2 Vidalia onions, quartered
4 hard-boiled eggs, peeled
6 fresh dill sprigs
Pre-heat the oven to 450. Wrap the beets in foil and roast for about an hour, until tender. When cool enough, carefully peel and quarter them.
In a medium saucepan, combine the vinegar, water, garlic, sugar, peppercorns and salt. Bring to a boil and simmer over moderately high heat, stirring until the sugar is dissolved. Let the pickling liquid cool to warm, about 15 minutes.
In a heat-proof glass jar or container, layer the beets, onion, eggs, and dill sprigs and then cover with the pickling liquid. Let stand at room temp for 2 hours, then place in fridge overnight.
They stay fresh for a week, but they won’t last that long!