Ikra iz svekly (Beetroot Caviar to you and me) is a ‘poor man’s caviar’ usually served on rye bread. It’s pretty simple to make, can be prepared in advanced which means it would make a good canape for a cocktail party. Plus it caters to any potential vegetarian or vegan guests. I found this recipe in The Food & Cooking of Russia, mentioned in a previous post last week. However, I adapted it to be more Charlotte-friendly, in other words, I made it a little more interesting and a little bit easier.
Be warned, cooking with beetroot can leave you with pink hands, so if you want to avoid this, wear gloves. If you, like me, dislike wearing gloves, keep a lemon handy, it is the best soap for getting rid of stains!
1 white onion
2 cloves of garlic
4 medium cooked beetroots
3 tbsp rapeseed oil
2 tbsp tomato puree
Salt and ground black pepper for seasoning
(To add an extra flavour I used smoked salt)
12 small pieces of rye bread to serve
Finely chopped parsley for garnish
Chop the onion and garlic finely
Coarsely grate the beetroot
(I used a ricer to effectively mince the beetroot.
it worked well but was messy and due to not wearing gloves I now have very pink hands)
Heat the oil in a medium pan
Add the onion and garlic and fry for 5 minutes until softened and golden brown
Add the grated beetroot to the pan and fry, stirring all the time, for 5 minutes
Add tomato puree
Stir well and cover the pan
Simmer for 10 minutes
Season the mixture
Transfer to a bowl to cool
To serve pile the beetroot on the rye bread and sprinkle with chopped parsley to garnish