– 2 or more beets, washed, scrubbed and trimmed (don’t trim the greens to close to the beet, but leave an inch or two at the top, and leave the long thin root at the bottom alone.)
– Beet greens; trimmed, leaves washed well and cut into ribbons
– 1 1/2 tablespoons butter, room temperature, divided
– 1/4 teaspoon finely grated orange peel
– 2 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, divided
– 2 skinless boneless chicken breast halves, filleted
– 2 tablespoons chopped shallots
– 2 teaspoons Sherry wine vinegar, divided
– 1/3 cup water
You can make this dish without filleting the breast, just cook the breasts longer, 4 – 5 minutes on each side. By filleting the chicken breast however, it cooks much more quickly and is more tender and delicate. First, cut the small muscle from the large muscle on each chicken breast. The smaller tapered muscle has a white tendon that must be removed. Place the larger muscle on a cutting board, with the side that was next to the bone facing down. Hold it flat with the palm of one hand. With the other hand take a sharp knife and slice the breast, moving the blade parallel to the cutting board, thus dividing the piece into two equal slices half its original thickness. Repeat the procedure with the other large muscle. You now have, from each whole breast, six tender fillets ready for cooking
• Preheat oven to 350. Coat beets in extra virgin olive oil by pouring 1 tablespoon of olive oil in to a shallow bowl and turning each of the beets in the oil. Wrap each beet in aluminum foil and place in the middle of preheated oven. Bake for 1 hour or more. Test for doneness by piercing with a tooth pick.
• While the beets are cooking, mix 1 tablespoon butter and 1/4 teaspoon orange peel in small bowl. Season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
• Heat 1/2 tablespoon oil in medium skillet over medium-high heat.
• Sprinkle chicken breast fillets with salt and pepper. Add to skillet and sauté until cooked through and golden brown, 1 minute total. Set aside and keep warm, covered with aluminum foil.
• Melt 1/2 tablespoon butter with 1/2 tablespoon oil in same skillet over medium-high heat.
• Add shallots; stir until tender and beginning to brown, about 1 minute.
• Add beet greens and water; toss until leaves are tender but still bright green, about 2 minutes. Add 1 teaspoon Sherry wine vinegar; stir 30 seconds. Season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
• Spoon greens alongside chicken; cover to keep warm.
• When beets are ready and cool enough to handle, peel and slice them into ¼ inch slices. Add beets to skillet and turn to coat in shallot butter sauce. Spoon beets onto serving platter with chicken and greens. Spoon orange butter atop chicken and serve.
Roasted Beets as a Side Dish
Beets make a beautiful and delicious side dish for lots of meals – the flavor as intense as the color. You can simply bake them as described in the Chicken and Orange Butter recipe above and serve them sliced with extra virgin olive oil, minced garlic and chopped parsley. Or you could sautee the roasted sliced gems in butter and sprinkle with a raspberry vinegar, 1 teaspoon finely grated orange zest, 1 teaspoon caraway seeds, 1 teaspoon snipped chives and salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste. For an easy and delicious treat – toss roasted, sliced beets with Bliss’ Sensational Southern Honey Orange Vinaigrette.