Beetroot Relish (Pickled Beetroot)

At the family farm, my mother tends a rather large vegetable patch. She’s good at the planting and growing part, however she is not very good at the picking, cooking and eating part. She often lets veg sit on the plant too long to over-grow or rot – this is where my sister and I step in. Last week we went out for a harvest session and returned with a full basket:

IMGP4216eggplant, beetroot, zucchini & blossom, squash, tomato, fig, lettuce

The beetroots were too big to roast with other veg, so we decided to make a relish, which will be used tonight atop some burgers.  Here’s what you’ll need for the relish:

  • Jars for storage (with matching lids – so many lids, so few jars…)
  • 4 large beetroot
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 11/2 cups white vinegar (or any other clear vinegar you have lying around)
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 tsp peppercorns
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 cloves
  • 1/2 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1/2 cinnamon stick
  • 1/4 tsp salt


Start by washing your beetroot thoroughly and cooking in a pot, covered with water until tender. The leftover tops of the beetroot can be eaten, wilted with some butter and lemon juice.

IMGP4219Once the beetroot is tender, peel and slice how you see fit.

IMGP4223We used a mandolin to julienne, however you could slice thinly as is done with canned beetroot.

IMGP4225While the beetroot is cooking, you can make your pickling liquid.  To do this, place all of your other ingredients into a saucepan and bring to the boil.  Simmer for 5 minutes, then strain over a bowl.

IMGP4221Boil a saucepan of water and drop in your jars one at a time, boil for around 2 minutes with the lids in too. This will sterilize your jars. If you have another technique for sterilizing your jars, feel free to use that method.

IMGP4222Now to fill the jars. Pack your sterilized jars with the sliced beetroot until full, then fill the remainder of the container with the strained pickling liquid.

IMGP4227Screw on the lid nice and tight and store in a cool spot until used. These will keep for months in the cupboard (if your jars were sterilized).  Slap on a nice label and you’re done, as simple as that. I would recommend waiting a week or so before you try your pickled goodies, as this will allow the flavours to meld.