Wednesday, October 2, 2013
Turn the Beet Around
We read a fun book called Tops and Bottoms about a lazy bear and a poor rabbit. The rabbit tricked the bear by telling him he would plant and take care of the garden but he will give the bear the bottoms of the plants and he will get the tops. So the first round of planting he grows things like lettuce, and corn, broccoli. So basically he gets the good stuff and the bear gets nothing. Then he tricks the bear again and says the bear can get the tops and the rabbit will get the bottoms, so he plants things like carrots, beets, radishes and potatoes, all things that you eat out of the ground and discard the tops. In the end the bear learns not to be lazy and the rabbit family doesn't starve so everyone is happy. The boys got a kick out of the mischief in the book and we talked about how we eat different parts of different plants.
We planted several different types of vegetables including beets in our little landscape garden and watched them grow up, up, up. After we had zucchini coming out of our ears, and salad for days it was time to pull up the beets. The purplish reddish bulbs looked dingy and not too exciting. But, my favorite part, when you slice them open you see these beautifully awesome rings of ruby and white. Kids will be astonished by the pattern inside and won't be able to wait to see what this cool veggie might taste like. Dylan said they kind of tasted like sweet potatoes. I like to roast them in the oven in slices so they turn out kind of like chips. I've also roasted them whole in tin foil and then cut into wedges then thrown them in a spinach salad with feta and balsamic vinaigrette. You don't get a lot of beets when you plant, unless you have a lot of space, but they are a fun thing to have around. Another trick I used is to serve them with sweet potato fries so there is more to go around and the kids can choose how much of each they want to eat.