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Generally the rule with fresh produce is the more different colours you can eat, the greater the variety of different nutrients and anti-oxidants you are consuming. By this rule, beetroot stands out as an impressive vegetable with its dark purple edible root and dark green edible leaves. The dark purple colour in beetroot is linked to reduced blood pressure, heart disease and stroke, and if you’re an athlete in training, check out the Exeter University study (link below) that showed beetroot juice contributed to increased stamina and performance. The dark green leaves are rich in nutrients are becoming more frequently used as a salad ingredient.
Beetroot these days is eaten roasted, in salads, in cakes, grated, pureed and adds instant colour to anything. We have come a long way from just opening a tin of beetroot! As a tip, you may want to consider wearing disposable glove when cutting beetroot, as the dark purple juices of the beetroot that make this food so good, can also make a bit of a mess!
Beetroot grows locally in WA around the Perth region and in the South West. Both fully mature fresh beetroot and baby beetroot are available.
Fresh beetroot is predominantly sold either as mature whole individual bulbs, or as bunches of baby beetroots with the stems and leaves attached.
When selecting baby beetroots, make sure the leaves are bright and fresh. Check to make sure they haven’t been damaged in any way and there are no splits.
Beetroot should be kept in the coldest part of the fridge, and will last for up to 8-10 days.
You may want to consider wearing disposable gloves when preparing beetroot. The same colour that makes them amazing, can also make a bit of a mess! The skin is edible, so just give them a scrub prior to roasting, but can easily be removed by peeling if you are after a softer finish.
Beetroots make fantastic dips, are great roasted and make an eye opening risotto! Roasted beetroot makes a fantastic salad with a small amount of goats cheese, roasted pine nuts and fresh green leaves.
Beetroot is great for boosting stamina and making muscles work harder, it also contains potassium, magnesium and iron as well as vitamins A, B6 and C, and folic acid.
|Nutrient||Value per 100 g|
|Energy, including dietary fibre||187||kJ|
|Available carbohydrate, without sugar alcohols||7.7||g|
|Available carbohydrate, with sugar alcohols||7.7||g|
|Pantothenic acid (B5)||0||mg|
|Dietary folate equivalents||120||ug|
|Beta carotene equivalents||9||ug|
NUTTAB 2010(Food Standards Australia New Zealand); The University of New South Wales; Professor Heather Greenfield and co-workers at the University of New South Wales; Tables of composition of Australian Aboriginal Foods (J Brand-Miller, KW James and PMA Maggiore).