Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Baked Beet Chips

I was watching Diary of a Foodie the other day & at the end of the episode they showed how to make baked beet chips. Well, I love beets & beet chips & thought how wonderful that these were baked instead of fried. I bought some beets this weekend & made the chips for a side dish with grilled sausage last night.
Beet Chips
They were certainly pretty & sweet but were a chip for all of about 3 minutes before going soggy. The recipe does say to cool them completely & then keep them in an airtight bag until right before serving because they will go soggy. But really, I cooled ours, served them right away & they got soggy & chewy as we ate dinner. I think the first couple were crisp. I wonder if perhaps I need to slice them even thinner next time, mine were under 1/8 of an inch? I'm also wondering if I can blanch them in water instead of a simple syrup, beets are nice & sweet on their own. Has anyone else tried making baked beets chips with any success?

2 medium beets with stems trimmed
1 cup water
1 cup sugar

Peel beets with a vegetable peeler, then slice paper-thin with slicer. Bring water and sugar to a boil in a 3-quart heavy saucepan, stirring until sugar is dissolved. Add beets, then remove pan from heat and let stand 15 minutes. Drain beets in a colander, discarding liquid, then let stand in colander 15 minutes more. Put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 225ºF. Line a shallow baking pan with nonstick liner, then arrange beet slices snugly in 1 layer and season with salt and pepper. Bake beets until dry, about 1 hour. Immediately transfer chips to a rack to cool (chips will crisp as they cool).

Beet chips can be made 5 days ahead and cooled completely, then kept in a sealed plastic bag at room temperature.

6 comments:

Deborah said...

I would love to try these out, but I need to get a mandolin first! I wonder if you cooked them a bit longer if they would stay crisp?

Jen said...

The beet chips look stunning (even if they did get soggy). I think that cooking the beets in the sugar water has more to do with them retaining their shape than adding additional sweetness. I seem to remember from my 8th grade foods class that through the properties of osmosis, if you cook a piece of fruit (or sugary veggie like beets) in water, it will get mushy as the sugar will leave the cells of the fruit and go into the water in an attempt to make both solutions equally concentrated. By cooking the fruit in sugar water, you don't really make it more sweet, but you do make sure the existing sugar doesn't leave the fruit and they hold their shape better...

Neen said...

Looks gorgeous, bummer they got soggy. Do update if you find a workable remedy!

kat said...

Jen - You thought makes total sense, I didn't think my science through there...

Anonymous said...

Sugar doesn't diffuse in or out because it can't get through the cell membranes of the fruit. In this case it is the water that has net diffusion into the more concentrated solution. If you put apples in just water, the water in the fruit is more concentrated, water diffuses in, and the fruit gets soggy. If you put the apples in concentrated sugar water, then water diffuses out into the more concentrated solution and the fruit dehydrates.

Anonymous said...

Hi,

I stumbled on your site when I did a google search for baked beet chips. Did you find out how to make them so they're not soggy?

I am a 30 yr old dude with not much cooking experience but I've been wanting to make something like this for a while. Pardon my ignorance here but I am wondering if there is anything else that could be added to make them crispier? Perhaps a honey/mapple syrup glaze? I don't know just a "gut feeling" guess. If you find out I would love to hear back from you at wildracoons@gmail.com

thanks! Your chips look great!

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