Beetroot (甜菜根) is a new vegetable to me. I only started eating beetroot 2 years ago after my good friend, Alice from Bits of Taste n Life introduced it to me. I didn’t know that there are so many great benefits eating beetroot until I read about it from here and here. The benefits of beetroot are:
a) it is a rich source of carbohydrates, a good source of protein, and has high levels of important vitamins, minerals and micronutrients.
b) it is an excellent source of folic acid and is therefore recommended to women who are pregnant or planning to become pregnant.
c) Betalins, obtained from the roots, are a type of antioxidant found in beetroot in fairly large quantities. You don’t need to eat much beetroot to take in a beneficial amount of betalin. Betalins are used industrially as red food colourants, e.g. to improve the colour of tomato paste, sauces, desserts, jams and jellies, ice cream, sweets and breakfast cereals.
d) it is a good source of potassium and magnesium.
e) it contains soluble fibre, which can help reduce blood cholesterol.
f) it also contains ‘carotenoids’ and ‘flavonoids’, which help prevent LDL or ‘bad’ cholesterol from being oxidised and deposited in the arteries.
g) cooked beetroot is a great source of folate that can protect you against high blood pressure, Alzheimer’s and dementia. It is also crucial to the development of a baby’s spinal cord during the first three months of pregnancy, so a good intake of folate is important to prevent spinal cord defects such as spina bifida.
h) it is virtually fat free and low in calories. Although it has a ‘medium’ GI (Glycaemic Index) of 64, it has an extremely low GL (Glycaemic Load) of 2.9 which means it’s converted into sugars very slowly and therefore helps to keep blood sugar levels stable – which is good for the blood.
Beetroot can be eaten in many ways either raw (juice, sandwich or salad) or cooked (steamed, boiled). If your urine turns pink after consuming a lot of beetroot, don't panic. It’s harmless and you’ll soon return to normal when your intake falls.
Today, I share with you my own version of beetroot soup. You can also find another beetroot soup recipe from Bits of Taste n Life .
2 small size beetroots (about 320g) – slice each beetroot into 4 portions
1 carrot (about 150g) – cut into chunks
1 large sweetcorn (about 300g) – cut into chunks
1 big onion – chopped coarsely
12-15 red dates - remove seeds
200g pork loin – cut into chunks
Salt and pepper to taste - optional
1. Blanch pork loin in boiling water for a short while. Dish and set aside.
2. Bring water to a boiling point. Add in all the ingredients and re-boil the soup . Then simmer for 2 hours.
3. Add seasonings accordingly and serve.
Other reading references:
If you have other wonderful beetroot recipes, please share with me.
I am submitting this recipe to Weekend Herb Blogging (WHB#157), which is now being housed by Haalo of Cook (almost) Anything at Least Once and hosted this week by Wiffy of Noob Cook.