In last weeks class, we learnt about and cooked with Beetroot. Here are some interesting facts about this root vegetable....
1. Beetroot also contains betaine, a substance that relaxes the mind and is used in other forms to treat depression and contains trytophan which is also found in chocolate and contributes to a sense of well being.
Sugar rush - Beetroot has one of the highest sugar contents of any vegetable. Up to 10 per cent of beetroot is sugar, but it is released slowly into the body rather than the sudden rush that results from eating chocolate.
Litmus test - You can use beetroot juice to measure acidity. When added to an acidic solution it turns pink, but when it is added to an alkali it turns yellow.
1. Turning heads - Since the 16th century, beet juice has been used as a natural red dye. The Victorians used beetroot to dye their hair.
2. Bottoms up - Beetroot can be made into a wine that tastes similar to port
3. Vanish - Beetroot is a water-soluble dye, and hot water seems to 'fix' the colour stain more, so use lukewarm or cold water to avoid staining.
4. To cure the inevitable 'pink fingers'' when cooking beetroot, rub with lemon juice and salt before washing with soap and water. On fabrics, try rubbing a slice of raw pear on the stain before washing, or rinse in cold water before washing in a biological powder.
5. Out of this world - In 1975, during the Apollo-Soyuz Test Project, cosmonauts from the USSR's Soyuz 19 welcomed the Apollo 18 astronauts by preparing a banquet of borscht (beetroot soup) in zero gravity.
6. Record breakers - The world's heaviest beetroot weighed 23.4kg (51.48lb) and was grown by Ian Neale from Somerset in 2001.