This is an excellent condiment for roasted meats, a nice change from cranberry sauce. Use darker dried fruits for red beets, lighter dried fruits for golden beets. Similarly use red wine-based vinegars, balsamic, sherry for red beets, and white wine vinegar or apple cider vinegar for golden beets. You will need enough beets to make 3 cups chopped, cooked.
2 – 3 large beets
1/2 – 3/4 c dried fruit, cut up if necessary–raisins, currants, cherries, prunes…(see headnote)
boiling water, for dried fruit
2 T vegetable oil
1/2 c chopped red onion or leeks, white part only
1/2 – 1 t curry powder, garam masala, chili powder, cajun spice blend, or other spice blend, or to taste
2 T vinegar (see headnote)
1 – 2 t sugar, optional
1 t salt
1/2 c reserved water from soaking dried fruit
1. Cook beets according to your preferred method–though roasting will give a richer flavor. When cool enough to handle, peel or not, and finely chop. Measure out three cups, reserving the rest for another use (toss into a salad).
2. Meanwhile, put dried fruit into a bowl and pour boiling water over. Let stand for 30 minutes, then drain. Reserve water, saving 1/2 c for recipe and remainder for another use (it will add a subtle sweet touch to broths).
3. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onion and sauté for 3 or 4 minutes. Add spice mixture and cook, stirring, for another 30 seconds, until fragrant. Stir in beets, dried fruit, vinegar, sugar, if using, salt, and the 1/2 c reserved dried fruit soaking water. Bring to a simmer and cook, covered or not, until the mixture has thickened some. Taste for seasonings, adding a bit more spice mixture if you think it’s needed. Cool before serving.