Savory Chocolate Insouciance

Frankenfood for the Rich and Fabulous

It’s been “Beet Week” around here at My Cooking Life and it’s coming to a close. That’s because I bought exactly three beets and made a commitment to try them three different ways despite the fact that I have never ever liked beets before.

I invited the always entertaining Tom Hanks to come over and coach me, I’m sure I kept you spellbound with the harrowing beet enforcement incident of my childhood, and we tuned in the unforgetable comedy and musical talent of Weird Al and Michael Jackson. I even risked eating raw beet salad and ventured into creating my own gourmet roasted beet salad.

But now it’s time to get totally un-serious.

What is the one ingredient that makes everything else taste much better? The one that changes our outlook on life and gives us the spiritual boost we need? What is the one thing that can and does make eating nearly any food a sensual, delectible experience?

It’s chocolate of course! And after all, it makes total sense that I would come up with a chocolate-themed beet recipe, does it not?

I created this recipe the way I do most of mine—I thought it up and then went to the kitchen and made it. I felt quite “saucy” doing this and hence the name of the dish!

Steamed Beets with Savory Chocolate Insouciance for Two

  • One or two beets 
  • Vegetable steamer
  • 1/4 cup aged dark balsamic vinegar (I used expresso flavored balsamic but you could add a shot of strong espresso to well-aged dark balsamic.
  • 1Teaspoon barley malt
  • 2 Teaspoons 100% pure cocoa powder
  • Salt
  • Cayenne pepper
  • Scallion garnish

Wash the beets and remove any little roots. Slice them about 1/4 inch thick. Steam the beets until they are as tender as you want them. I steamed mine for 20 minutes in a bamboo steamer

This wonderful bamboo steamer has a lid, of course, except when I'm taking a picture of the contents!

This wonderful bamboo steamer has a lid, of course, except when I’m taking a picture of the contents!

In a small sauce pan, combine the balsamic vinegar, espresso, barley malt, cocoa powder and salt.  When the beets were done steaming I removed them and put my pan over the steam heat. I heated the sauce until it was well combined and heated but not boiling (chocolate does not taste good burned or over-cooked!) The sauce will thicken as you stir. Add a pinch or two of cayenne pepper.

Serve the steamed beets with this lovely sauce over it.

Yes! When in doubt, add chocolate! Even beets taste okay with Savory Chocolate Insoucience! I finished the beets on my plate and then ate all the sauce from the plate and the sauce pan.

A hint of cayenne makes the sauce extra-insouciant.

A hint of cayenne makes the sauce extra-insouciant.

And for those of you who truly like beets even if they don’t have chocolate all over them, here’s a great blog about beets Italian style that I’m adding here: Jovina Cooks Italian

Advertisements