Beetroot bil Zeit, is a vibrant and unique dish that beautifully showcases the concept of zero waste while offering a delightful spin on traditional preparations of greens. This recipe celebrates the humble beetroot in its entirety, leaves and all, ensuring that nothing goes to waste.
The rich, earthy flavours of beetroot harmonise perfectly with the tangy notes of lemon and sumac, creating a symphony of tastes that will leave you craving more. This dish not only pays homage to traditional methods of cooking but also invites you to experience the joy of using the whole ingredient, fostering a sustainable and mindful approach to cooking.
As you prepare this Beetroot Bil Zeit, take a moment to appreciate the simple yet profound beauty of using every part of the beetroot, from its ruby-red roots to its lush, verdant leaves. By embracing this sustainable culinary practice, you are not only creating a scrumptious and colourful meal but also fostering a deeper connection to the food we eat and the earth that provides it.
So, let’s gather our ingredients and embark on this delightful culinary adventure, as we celebrate the flavours and the spirit of sustainability with Beetroot Bil Zeit. Happy cooking and bon appétit!
Basic Ingredients for Beetroot Bil Zeit
Beetroot with Leaves: The star of this dish, beetroot, provides a rich, earthy flavour and a beautiful, deep red colour. Using both the root and the leaves showcases the versatility of this ingredient and embraces a sustainable, zero-waste approach to cooking. The leaves add a mild, slightly bitter taste that complements the sweetness of the beetroot.
Extra-virgin Olive Oil: This essential ingredient in Mediterranean and Middle Eastern cuisine lends a fruity, peppery undertone to the dish. It helps cook the vegetables, enhancing their flavours, and contributes to the overall richness and smoothness of the dish.
Red Onion: The slightly sweet and mild taste of red onion adds depth to the dish, complementing the beetroot and providing a subtle contrast to the tangy flavours of lemon and sumac.
Garlic Cloves: These aromatic and flavorful bulbs provide a savoury, pungent note that balances the sweetness of the beetroot and onion, enhancing the overall taste of the dish.
Salt and Black Pepper: These simple seasonings enhance and draw out the natural flavours of the ingredients, ensuring that each component of the dish shines.
Lemon: The bright, tangy, and slightly acidic flavour of lemon lifts the dish, adding a refreshing taste that balances the earthiness of the beetroot and the sweetness of the onion.
Sumac: This tangy, slightly fruity Middle Eastern spice adds a unique and vibrant flavour to the dish, perfectly complementing the lemon and contrasting the sweetness of the beetroot.
Swiss Chard or Kale: If beetroot leaves are unavailable, you can substitute with Swiss chard or kale for a similar texture and taste.
Red Wine Vinegar or Apple Cider Vinegar: If you don’t have lemon, try using red wine vinegar or apple cider vinegar for a slightly different tangy flavour.
Scallions or Shallots: If red onion is not available, you can use scallions or shallots as an alternative for a milder onion flavour.
Za’atar or Dried Thyme: If you can’t find sumac, try using za’atar or dried thyme for an alternative earthy and tangy flavour.
Preparation Tip for Beetroot Bil Zeit
- To remove any dirt or grit, wash the beetroot and leaves thoroughly. Dry them well before using to ensure a vibrant and clean dish.
- To achieve tender and evenly cooked beetroot, make sure to trim and wrap them properly in foil before roasting.
- When chopping the beetroot leaves and stalks, try to cut them into evenly-sized pieces to ensure uniform cooking.
Serving Tips for Beetroot Bil Zeit
- For a visually appealing presentation, arrange the sautéed beet leaves on a large, shallow platter and top them with the roasted beetroot cubes.
- If desired, garnish the dish with additional sumac, a drizzle of olive oil, or a sprinkle of toasted sesame seeds for added texture and flavour.
- Serve Beetroot Bil Zeit as a side dish or a light main course, accompanied by warm pita bread, rice, or your favourite grain.
- Store leftover Beetroot Bil Zeit in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days.
- To preserve the freshness and flavour of the dish, avoid mixing the sautéed beet leaves and roasted beetroot until you are ready to serve it.
- If you need to reheat leftovers, do so gently on the stovetop over low heat or in the microwave, taking care not to overcook the vegetables.
Beetroot Bil Zeit
- 4 medium-sized beetroot with leaves
- 60 ml extra virgin olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
- 1 large red onion
- 2 garlic cloves
- Salt, to taste
- Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 1 lemon
- 1 tsp sumac
- Pre-heat the oven to 200° Celsius.
- Trim the leaves and stalks of the beetroot and set them aside. Thoroughly wash and dry the beetroot. Rub the beets with 2 tbsp of olive oil, then wrap them in foil and place on a baking tray. Place the tray in the oven for 45 minutes to 1 hour.
- Remove the tray from the oven. Peel and quarter the beetroot. Place the quartered beetroot in a bowl and set aside.
- Thoroughly wash and dry the beet leaves and stalks,then roughly chop both.
- Peel and thinly slice the red onion and garlic.
- Heat the remaining 2 tbsp of olive oil in a large shallow frying pan over a medium heat. Add the onion and garlic to the pan and sauté until the onion is soft and translucent. Add the chopped beetroot leaves and stalks and sauté for 7-10 minutes, until the stalks have softened,and the excess liquid has evaporated. Season with the salt and pepper. Remove the pan from the heat.
- Juice the lemon. Add the juice along with the sumac to the pan and toss everything together.
- Roughly chop the hazelnuts and mint.
- Drizzle with the olive oil and add the beetroot cubes on top, and season with the salt and pepper. Place dollops of labneh over the beetroot and scatter the hazelnuts and fresh mint over. Sprinkle the sumac over. Serve immediately.