It is quite easy an very delicious to make your own picled beetroots. It is possible to give them your own exiting twist using many different spices and of course chili. I love to variate the spices when I pickle them, but it seems like I often return to a combination of cloves and chili. If you already have a favourite picled beetroot recipe – it is easy to adjust the amount and different kinds of spices in it. Here's my take on a recipe – do add the spices that you think will be fun.
The beetroots here is very relish-like. If you choose to cut them like I do, you fish for a bit of chili and horseradish with the beetroot pieces when using them. Hot and delicious. It tastes a bit of everything, so you have to like both beetroots, horseradish, chili and cloves (or moderate the amounts of flavourings).
1 kg beetroots
Water and salt for boiling
50 gr horseradish
½ liter vinegar (standard vinegar or any kind you like)
½ tbsp salt
5oo gr raw cane sugar
Chillies to taste (i.e.. 30 gr chinenses – Habanero strength)
2 tsp whole cloves
2 tsp powdered chili or chili flakes (not too coarse)
Small whole – possibly. dried – chilies for decoration in the jars
maybe some. Sodium benzoate (not necessary, I think)
Rinse the beetroots well and cut of the top and some of the thin part of the root, if there's a long root. Keep the peel intact – so that only the uppermost part of the top is removed.
Boil the beetroots in salty water until almost done. Cover with water and use 1 tbsp salt per . liter. The beetroots will have to boil for 20 – 60 minuts. The larger the beetroot, the longer the cooking time.. Use the tip og a pointed knife to feel if they're done. They have to be at bit firm but almost tender.
Meanwhile grate the horseradish – it can be fine or medium coarse. Chop the chili finely (possibly. in the foodprocessor) and mix it with the horseradish. Cover and place in refridgerator until it shall be used.
Grind cloves in spice mill and mix them with chili powder / crushed chili.
Drain beets when they have had enough and immediately fill the pot with ice-cold water – and pour it off again.
Twist and rub the skin off the beets.
Cut the beets into cubes of between ½ and 1 cm wide and place them in clean, scalded and optionally. sodium bezoate rinsed glass jars. In between beetroot layers add the spices in the glass jars – both horseradish-chili-blend and ground cloves/chilies. I fill some of the spices in the jars when 1/3 filled and the rest when 2/3 filled.
Put in a few whole (decorative)chilies along the sides of the glas jars. Use a spoon to gently press the beetroot cubes together in the jars while filling them, such that there may be more in the glasses.
Give the vinegar a quick boil with sugar and salt. Take it off the heat and leave for 10 minutes. Add Sodium benzoate if you choose to use that (both the vinegar and the horseradish are preserving, so I do not think it is necessary here) and pour the brine over the beets. Tighten the lids and shake the jars well – back and forth and up and down, so that all the airbubbles will rise to the surface. Unscrew the lids and fill the jars to the brim with the brine. Immediately close and tighten the lids again and set the jars aside to cool.
When completely cooled, they probably need a rinsing on the outside – it's quite difficult to avoid spilling some of the brine.
Let beets soak in the brine and spices for at least a week before you eat them – preferably much longer. Go fish for a little chili and horseradish with the beetroot cubes when using them (mix the content around in the jar using a clean spoon when fishing).
There will usually be enough brine when dicing the beetroots into little cubes an packing them a bit in the jars like I do – but if you prefer round traditional slices or little wedges, it might be a good idea to multiply by 1,5.
Some recipes prescribe that water is used in the brine, some doesn't. I don't believe in adding water to this one, but you can choose to do so if you use the model where beets are cut into slices. Up to half of the vinegar can then be replaced by water.
Do add the spices that you like – I do not necessarily make the same kind each time, just as the chili heat may vary. You could also try to . add different spices and amount of chili in each jar. It is possible to use dried chili, if fresh ones aren't available. In my version here there's a lot of cloves – which I like a lot.
One star anise at the bottom of each jar is also a hit. Also try to use fennel seeds or liqourice root (raw liqourice is also a possibility) – or how about all the 'liqourice' tasting spices together.