Beetroot or Beet (Betteraves)

Facts about beetroot or beet in France, its health benefits, how best to prepare them, plus links to easy, healthy beet recipes.

crate of raw beetroot at the French market

Beetroot Season

Autumn – Winter; October – March.

Facts about Beetroot/Beet in France

  • France is the second biggest producer of beetroot in Europe behind Italy;
  • According to Aprifel, it’s high in fibre, potassium, calcium, magnesium and antioxidants. So healthy, it’s considered a superfood;
  • Above all this root vegetable is known for its sugar content and used for the sugar industry and distilleries;
  • It’s deep crimson colour is used as a natural food colouring (Betanin);
  • Sometimes eaten raw in salads (grated), beetroot is mainly cooked. Popular for its particularly sweet character, so ideal with both sweet and savoury dishes;
  • Chiogga (candy beetroot) is particularly pretty and great for serving sliced very thinly in salads or to decorate dishes. Marinate in some walnut/hazelnut oil with some white balsamic vinegar or orange juice for that extra je ne sais quoi! See this Corsican Charcuterie Salad;

beetroot with leaves

  • Can I eat beetroot leaves? Of course you can.  The smaller leaves are great added as a colourful addition to salads. The larger leaves tend to be rather bitter, so cook them like spinach. They’d be excellent in this Corsican cheese lasagna;
  • Best way to cook beetroot? If cooked in water, beetroot loses its vitamins and minerals (and colour) easily. Instead, the best way to cook them is to roast them;
  • To roast: peel and cut into chunks, top with some olive oil, onion slivers, fresh herbs and sesame seeds and roast uncovered (180°C) for 30-40 minutes;
  • Did you know that beetroot and Swiss chard are cousins
  • Storage: whether if bought raw or cooked, keep covered in a sachet or airtight container for up to 5 days in the fridge;

Beetroot Recipes

vegetarian recipes

From the market

From the kitchen