For a change of pace, try cooking grated raw beets for a quick and nutritious side dish. Beets and oranges are a natural pairing, and the dominant orange flavor makes even non-beet lovers fans of this dish. As anyone who's ever handled red beets knows, they stain everything they touch, so handle them carefully. Use the medium shredding disk of a food processor, if you have one, to make quick work of the grating step.
thinly sliced shallots
red beets, peeled and grated (about 1 pound, generous 4 cups grated)
Salt and freshly ground pepper (to taste)
fresh orange juice
grated orange zest
Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the shallots and cook, stirring frequently, until they soften.
Add the grated beets, season lightly with salt and pepper, and saute for 2 to 3 minutes, until the beets are warm.
Add the orange juice and orange zest. Bring the liquid to the start of a simmer, then cover the skillet with a lid or a piece of aluminum foil. Cook until the beets are just tender and the liquid has evaporated, 10 to 15 minutes, shaking the pan occasionally.
If the beets aren't tender, add a tablespoon or two of water, re-cover, and continue cooking. Sprinkle with the sugar and stir gently to combine. Serve hot.
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