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Beetroot 2.0: Toasting the numero uno mock meat

India’s top chefs highlight 2019’s star vegetable as a meat alternative, noodle and sorbet

It is version 2.0 for the humble, ruby red vegetable that was unceremoniously given the cold shoulder in our kitchens earlier. From the shunned bulbs cultivated by the ancient Greeks around 300 BC to the modish, sliced and shimmying cuts now, the beetroot clearly stands reinvented, elbowing aside simple South Indian curries, spice concoctions, mock meat and even desserts. Here’s how star chefs across the country are giving the beet a nouveau spin in their menus.

Manish Mehrotra, Indian Accent | Baked Beet Tikki: For many, their taste buds have taken time to celebrate the vegetable. Mehrotra confesses, “I hated the beet as a child. There is talk about glugging beetroot juice these days, but who amongst us grew up drinking beet juice? We had musambi juice all the time.” Of course, by his own admission, as he began sojourning across Europe, he discovered the delicious ways of celebrating the beetroot, at cosy cafés and signature restaurants, crusted, ashed, salted and pickled. His recent menu innovations, including the Baked Beet Tikki with Peanut Butter and Goat Cheese Raita pay homage to the vegetable.

Shilpi Madan for The Hindu

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