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Every Valentine’s Day (even though I feel like on scale of 1 to tacky, Valentine’s Day scores a Dollywood)  I like to bring you a little fun with food. Because even though I’m not a huge Valentine’s Day fan I AM a huge food fan.   The first year I did this, I knocked it out of the park with my Mini Heart Tarts.

This year I wanted to do something with beets.  They’re red, they’re delicious (unless they taste like dirt to you in which case they’re earthy with a hint of moth) and I have a bunch of them in my cold cellar.  My cold cellar is actually an old pantry in my mud room by the way.  It’s also where I store my extra baking pans, cases of diet coke, Bogs and for some reason, a jar of “Glow in the Dark” lawn dust.  And yes, that would be dust that you sprinkle on your lawn to make it glow in the dark.  Presumably to make your lawn the most attractive lawn in the neighbourhood to alien visitors.



So if you’re planning on cooking dinner this Valentine’s day, whether it’s just for you …   WAIT.  HOLD IT RIGHT THERE!!!   I would like to rephrase that because “just for you” implies cooking for you and you alone is sad. And forlorn. And unimportant. It is not.  I cooked great meals for myself before the fella, during the fella and after the fella.  I’m using “just for you” in the same way one would use the phrase “solely for you”.  Or even better “JUST FOR YOU!!!”.

So, whether this Valentine’s dinner is JUST FOR YOU!!!! or for YOU AND YOUR FAMILY!! or YOU AND YOUR DOG!!! or YOU AND YOUR HAND HOLDER!!! add this little twist on beets.

All I’ve done is cook the beets, slice them, and then cut them with a small heart shaped cookie cutter.

Then you can either pile them into a nice little stack like I did in the photo above, or lay them out flat like I’ve done in the photo below.



What better way to say “I heart you” and “I heart beets” all at the same time?

If you want to get fancy you can add a little bit of dressing to the beets with some crumbled goat’s cheese and a few crushed nuts or seeds like pecans or pumpkin seeds.  In fact, I almost always have a jar of this dressing in my fridge.

Dressing for Beets

A quick dressing that's great on beets, roasted red peppers, salad.
Prep Time2 mins
Total Time2 mins
Course: Side Dish
Author: The Art of Doing Stuff


  • 2 Tablespoons Balsamic Vinegar
  • 6 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon Mustard
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 1-2 sprigs of fresh thyme leaves if you can be bothered
  • dash of Salt & Pepper


  • Add your balsamic to the bowl first.
  • Mix in dijon, honey, thyme leaves, salt and pepper.
  • Slowlyyyyyy drizzle in olive oil while whisking.


Now if you’ll excuse me I have some very demanding aliens to entertain.


  1. Jennie Lee says:

    That was a very respectable job of trying to get me to eat beets, Karen, but they do sort of taste like dirt to me, actually. And I have to say that, of the several amusement parks I’ve visited, Dollywood was no more tacky than any other. (I’m from Blount County, Tennessee. We like Dolly.)

    • Karen says:

      I love Dolly! But she’d be the first to admit to being tacky. Dollywood is probably tied with Niagara Falls, but Niagara Falls has the added distinction of being creepy. ~ karen!

  2. Dagmar says:

    Mmm, beets are delicious. This is a cute idea, Karen. So simple, but so fancy at the same time. *For all of you who are newcomers to eating beets – be forewarned, they will change your number 1 and 2 output to a reddish tint* Beets are also great for dying textiles and even hair – the silly things I learned as a kid 😉

  3. Dagmar says:

    P.S. I didn’t mean dying the fabric or the hair with the output – just pure beet juice and vinegar LOL

  4. MissChris SA says:

    Having had beets just about every day at boarding school that were cooked until grey, I have only just, some 40 years later managed to eat raw beets in a salad but it does look very pretty and my old man loves beets, so maybe, just maybe I will muster up some romantic side and present him with heart shaped beets!

    The dressing sounds devine!!

  5. Mary W says:

    YUM – easy and simple. Will be eating this soon.

  6. TucsonPatty says:

    I grew up cooking “Hawaiian Beets” because that was the only way my siblings would eat them. I love them that way. Basically a sweet and sour sauce with pineapple and beets. Yum! I do like beets, and I’ll try this one. Pretty.

    • Brenda says:

      that sounds like a pretty + tasty combo, too

      laughing at the dirty moth taste to some Karen … I be making some of that for Me Myself & I … with some dressing and crumbled feta YUM

  7. Nancy Blue Moon says:

    I also love beets and would enjoy doing this for myself…with your yummy dressing of course!!

  8. Mark says:

    Those beets look really beautiful, Karen! Very nice.

  9. Marti says:

    Pretty. Very pretty. But yeah, I’d still rather make heart-shaped meringues with berry filling and whipped cream topping for my friends. Go ahead and make these for your “loved ones,” and let me know how that works out.

    I’m going with meringue and berries. I might make the beets for me, but I’m contrary like that.

  10. Cynthia Jones says:

    What’s a Bog?

    • Mama Toto says:

      Bogs are a brand name of wonderful gardening shoes!

      • OR, a type of wetland, a depression which is often covered with peat or sphagnum moss. The water is usually stagnant and very alkaline with a unique ecosystem. They contain very slow growing plants and decay is even slower if something should happen to wander (or be tossed) in to a bog and disappear thus preserving the “subject” in almost perfect condition years, and I’m talking many, years later. There are many tales of Bog People who met their gruesome fate either mistakenly or as a form of torture/justice. http://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/2007/09/bog-bodies/bog-bodies-text/3
        However, I think it is more likely the aforementioned shoes Karen has in her pantry.

        • Penny says:

          Here in Yorkshire, as well as the wetland you describe, ‘bog’ is a slang term for the loo, lavatory, WC, toilet, whatever you call it. It makes me wonder; there are so many terms for it that can be used in ‘polite’ company, why do we need slang ones as well? And what the hell are the Yanks doing, calling it the BATHroom? That’s a whole different room in my house! And RESTroom? Who goes in there for a REST?! Don’t get me started . . . oh, wait, too late.

  11. Karol says:

    Beautiful picture. Too bad it’s beets. Blech! Only two veggies I cannot stand… Beets and Okra. They both give me shivers.

    • Penny says:

      You’re dead right about okra. Ladies’ fingers, my arse! Gremlin’s Snot-tubes, in my humble opinion. The only other vegetable I’ve tried and detested was eddoes. They’re a sort of yam-type thing that look like bristly brown testicles before they’re cooked, and like slightly translucent, vaguely greyish potatoes after. The texture is a little floury with a hint of the same mucus-like ‘bleaghness’ of okra. I can tell you can’t wait to buy some.

  12. Marna says:

    So pretty! Cute idea! 🙂

  13. Sandra Lea says:

    Ok I have to know, where do you get glow in the dark lawn dust?

    • Karen says:

      I wish I could tell you! My mother got it for me (as far as I can remember). I think it may have come from a hardware store. Or the UFO store. ~ karen!

  14. Barb says:


  15. barb says:

    I’d like to get me some glow in the dark lawn dust. Where’d you get it?

  16. judy says:

    when I was a child 70 years ago….! Gawd I’m old….we used to love to catch fireflies in jars. If there really is a glow in the dark dust I could imagine marking glowing paths in the Garden with little hidden treats along the way, Perhaps not exciting enough for children who have their own laptop and cell phone as soon as they are out of diapers. Happy Heart Day Karen…Your writing and skills are beyond impressive and lots of people you will never meet love you-not weirdly but with affection.

  17. Monique says:

    I have made those:) No surprise;)
    The dressing looks fantastic..I bet that guy misses you like mad.
    And you are right..I think Valentine’s is great for kiddies..etc..the pretty hearts galore..but apart from that..I don’t see the romance in it..wayyyy too commercial..A hug is good enough.Not a card someone wrote at Hallmark.
    Hallmark..loved the teacher card commercials though.

  18. Sonia says:

    My favorite Dolly quote: I’m not offended by dumb blonde jokes because I know I’m not dumb, and I also know I’m not blonde.

    I love beets, great idea Karen.

  19. Heather J Tebbutt says:

    I found my heart shaped cookie cutters (3 sizes)…also cutters of butterflies, flowers & stars!!!Haven’t used them for awhile…I am a 70+widow (2012)…gosh you don’t hear that word much anymore sounds rather ghoulish!.. your blog has been the “kick in the ass” that I needed…
    I really like beets & your dressing sounds delicious. I made your chili recipe again…big hit!

    Happy Valentine’s Day…ha,ha, also Happy Family Day on Monday (Ontario only).

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Heather! I’m excited for Family Day. No idea what I’ll do but chances are I’ll be the one day of the year when I don’t see one of my family members, lol. (we see each other a LOT) And my job is to be an ass kicker so I’m glad you’re responding. 🙂 ~ karen!

  20. Linda in Illinois says:

    Love the sound of the dressing, I will try it for sure. Happy V.Day Karen !

  21. Shauna says:

    I really want Betty to tell us where she bought the glow in the dark lawn dust. I think I could definitely find a use for this stuff at Halloween.

  22. Marjorie Kramer says:

    These beets are so clever, they make me want to cook Valentines dinner just so I can make them! Hmmm.

  23. Karissa says:

    I kept waiting for a “beeting of my heart” pun…

  24. Wisconsin Gal says:

    I googled lawn dust and found it online at Canadian Tire. It doesn’t get very good reviews, although one person reports success with it. Glow away!


  25. Katrina says:

    What is this, glow in the dark lawn dust that you speak of?

    Is it something only sold in Canada? I don’t have lawn in the summer (drought in Cali) but damnit, I would like my dirt patch to glow at night!

    Beets. Blah. No matter how pretty you present them they still taste like dirt. (Shivers)

  26. charlotte tataryn says:

    Happy “almost” Valentine’s Day Karen and readers. I just fell across that wonderful finished ‘stump’ in your Style @ Home magazine spread (didn’t know you then) and I checked through the DIY’s but all I found was the ‘lazy stump’ and I cannot, for the life of me, find anything otherwise related to trees and/or stumps except how to open a wine bottle with one. Great info for campers but I’m REALLY looking to see how you finished that fine piece of wood. I haven’t got a stump that will work BUT I do have someone on the lookout. Maybe I need to remind him he’s doing that. Anyway, if any of you know the info on that stump table I’d sure like to hear about it. Pretty beets Karen – too bad I just can’t make myself like them despite how good they are for us.
    HVD everyone.

  27. Gwen says:

    You were very clever on making heart-shaped beets. I have never tried eating one but you just convinced me on this.

  28. Bella says:

    Karen, thanks for inspiration & practical how-to’s! Love your style and reading your posts… admire how you write ‘out loud’ like how you’d describe to a friend – such a gift for readers, real and relatable:)

    Combo weekend here – heart shaped beets/yummy dressing AND those 3 weekend cleaning chores… intend to both freshen my space & warm my heart/belly!!!

  29. leslie says:

    Karen- I have a burning question! How do you get the olive oil not to solidify in the fridge? I hate bottled dressing and am suspicious of canola oil (maybe due to all the canolas I DON’T see growing in fields all around me). This extends to most other seed oils as well since they’ve gotten bad press from all kinds of new health reports. Is there a way to keep the dressing flowing without having to take it out of the fridge an hour before applying it to salad? Or holding it in your armpit when you’ve forgotten and guests are waiting to eat?

  30. Laura Bee says:

    I made heart shaped pancakes for breakfast & my daughter & I had heart cutout PBJs for lunch. 🙂 I should run out for beets to go with tonight’s pork chops. So cute.

  31. Cakespy says:

    Be still my beeting heart! (haha) I love this recipe!!!

  32. Luanne says:

    Tried your vinagrette with a veggie/sprouted bean salad. Yummy! Thank you. 🙂

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The Art of Doing Stuff