Smoked beets with lime yogurt sauce à la Travis Strickland

Written by

Beets are grown year-round in California but this is the time of year when I think they taste best. The root vegetables are sweet, taste pleasantly of the earth in which they’ve grown and have flavors that pack a punch when smoked, grilled, steamed or even when eaten raw. Plus, they’re incredibly good for you and interesting to cook with as they soak up flavors of the other ingredients you’re using just like a sponge. I’ve heard sipping the pot liquor, that vitamin-packed liquid leftover from boiling beet greens, is a tried-and-true remedy for the cold.

Just in time for Memorial Day, Chef Travis Strickland has shared his “set it and forget it” smoked beets recipe with me. He’s throwing beets of all different varieties on the grill at Baltaire — golden beets, Detroit reds and pink-and-white striped Chioggias — before serving them with a tangy sauce of yogurt, sumac, pistachios and sorrel. What could go wrong?