As with much of the country we have had rain over the weekend. For me perfect timing for putting away a few more preserves.
I planted a few beetroot a couple of months ago - I grew them from seed and the cats dug a couple up but there were enough for a few more jars to add to our stocks.
I love bottling beetroot. There is something so satisfying about boiling them up and slipping the skins off before you slice them for bottling. I have tried making a chutney in past years, but this way is still my fave and we will eat them at least once a week. I always have a container on the go in our fridge and they will keep for weeks. As well as just having them as a condiment, I often dice them into small cubes and just sprinkle them around the edge of the plate - they look, and taste, so yum.
Bottling them is easy. You will need Agee jars, seals and rings. As per normal with bottling jars need to be sterilised in the oven, the rings in boiling water and the seals in boiling water (just before bottling to soften the rubber).
Boil your beetroot until a knife will pierce. If I have big and small I add the smaller ones after the big ones have become almost tender. Drain, peel, cut off any knobbly ends and then slice (or cube if you prefer)
Work out how much liquid you will need to well cover the beetroot - I do this by getting a measuring jug and covering the beetroot with water, writing down the amount and then draining the water off.
My rule of thumb is 1/3 brown vinegar, 2/3 water and white sugar to taste. (Remember the sugar will add more voume so take that into account) Put these into a large pot or preserving pan and bring to the boil. At this point I generally taste a bit (after cooling slightly!) and add more sugar if necessary. Once it is boiling add your sliced beetroot, bring back to the boil and you are ready to bottle. I use the overflow method and it works really well for me.
I've been doing this for 40 years and my Mum for 40 years before that. Tried and true and way, way better than that tasteless canned stuff!!