€3,95 – €39,50
per 100 grams
The beach beet or sea beet (Beta vulgaris subsp. Maritima) is an ancestor of the sugar beet, fodder beet, chard and red beet and belongs to the amaranth family. Beach beet is rare in the Netherlands. The plant occurs on the flood marks at the foot of dunes and sea dikes.
The beach beet is native to Southern Europe and North Africa on the Mediterranean coast and on the coast in Western Europe: to the west the natural area extends to the islands in the Atlantic Ocean: the Azores, Madeira, Canary Islands. North to the south coast of Norway and Sweden. Only in recent years the beach beet also occurs on the Baltic Sea coast to Poland and Finland.
Young leaves of the beach beet can be eaten as a salad. Older leaves taste bitter and should be cooked like spinach ready. This bitter taste is caused by the high tannin and iron content. In Swiss chard, these negative properties have disappeared through breeding.
The leaves have been eaten as a vegetable since prehistoric times, according to Neolithic finds. Cultivation probably started as early as two thousand years before Christ. Writings from Assyria show that the beach beet (“Silga”) was planted in the hanging gardens of Babylon as early as around 800 BC.