How to make it

  • Preheat the oven to 350°.
  • Line a 9-inch square baking dish with plastic wrap.
  • Rub the beets lightly with olive oil and wrap individually in foil. Bake the beets for about 1 hour, or until tender when pierced with a fork. Let cool until they're easy to handle. If you don't like peeling beets with your bare hands, you can use some of those latex gloves that were all the rage during the anthrax scare after 9/11.
  • Meanwhile, in a Dutch oven or large pot, whisk the grits with whole milk, water, and 1 teaspoon salt. Bring to a boil over moderate heat, whisking constantly. Cover the grits and bake for about 50 minutes, stirring 3 or 4 times. The grits are done when they're tender and the liquid has been absorbed.
  • Whisk 6 tablespoons butter and the egg yolk into the grits. Season with pepper. Spoon the grits into the prepared baking dish and press a sheet of plastic wrap directly onto the surface. Refrigerate until firm, about 1 hour.
  • Now, peel your roasted beets and cut them either into 1-inch pieces or thin slices. Transfer the beet pieces to a large bowl.
  • In a medium skillet, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil until shimmering. Add the mushrooms and thyme sprig and season with salt and pepper. Cook over moderately high heat, stirring occasionally, until the liquid has evaporated and the mushrooms are lightly browned, about 8 minutes.
  • Add the wine and ½ tablespoon butter and cook, stirring, until most of the wine evaporates, about 1 minute.
  • Add the mushrooms to the beets. Discard the thyme sprig.
  • Wipe out the skillet. Add 2 tablespoons olive oil and heat until shimmering. Add the shallots and cook over moderate heat, stirring, until softened.
  • Add the vinegar, sugar and a pinch of salt and cook until slightly reduced, about 3 minutes.
  • Stir in ¼ cup olive oil and add to the beets and mushrooms. Stir in the chives and season with salt and pepper.
  • Spread the rice flour on a plate. Turn the grits out onto a work surface; discard the plastic. Cut the grits in half, then cut each half into eight narrow 4½-inch-long rectangles. They should look like large French fries. Dust the grits with rice flour. Oil a large skillet or sauté pan and heat until the oil is shimmering.
  • Add the grit cakes and fry over moderately high heat until golden and crisp all over, about 8 minutes total. Drain on paper towels and season lightly with salt.
  • Transfer the cakes to a platter and top with the sweet-and-sour beets and mushrooms.
  • Garnish with the baby greens and serve.
  • This recipe is adapted from something I saw Emeril do on his show years ago. As I said, you don't have to use sweet-and-sour beets if you don't want to --I sometimes serve them with a yellow pepper aioli to which I've added some pasted garlic. Your choice.

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  • mystic_river1 10 years ago
    This was fantastic. They had the most beautiuful beets in the market and I had bookmarked and remembered this.Thanks!
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  • mellian 10 years ago
    Good humor in the recipe! I'm bookmarking for later. Thanks!
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  • shirleyoma 10 years ago
    Sounds sooooooooo good! Great post Bookmarked too
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