a very underused vegetable in America. In Iraq we even
use the leaves to make dolma when
we don't have grape leaves! Their color and their sweetness
are absolutely wonderful, and they are rich in vitamins
and iron. What's wrong with these Americans?
In a large bowl,
mix the uncooked rice, shallots, and spices (be generous
with the cinnamon!). Set aside.
Now, you've already halved all the
beets. Core them with a knife to remove the center, but
don't toss them out. We'll use them to cover out stuffed
beets. Place a large spoonful of the rice mixture in the
center of the beet, and place the "cored" part on top! Remember
that the rice will grow when cooked, so DO NOT OVERSTUFF!
for the important part: Coat a medium saucepan with olive
place each beet into the saucepan as you finish stuffing
them. Stick them as closely together as possible—this will
prevent them from coming apart—until your saucepan is stuffed.
Add enough water to cover the beets,
and throw in some sea salt. Turn on medium
heat until the water starts to bubble, then close with
a tight-fitting lid and reduce the flame to simmer. Allow
to cook for about 30 minutes.
The wonderful purplish
color and smell of beets will delight your guests and
family—it's sooo good!
Back in Iraq we also used to use ground meat in this dish. However,
I think this dish stands alone as a great vegetarian one.
It's your decision!