Jun 19 | To whom it may concern

Assignment Day Fourteen: Pick up the nearest book and flip to page 29. What jumps out at you? Start there, and try a twist: write in the form of a letter.


That sounds like fun. A lot of fun. I love books, and also happen to have a lot of them lying around rather randomly. Off for the pick now, back with a letter in a second…


Dear Beet,

when we first met, I had no idea what you were capable of. My grandparents introduced us when I was a kid. And you came along in a pickled dress, along with onions and a vinegary note that could not even remotely hide your earthy aroma. Some might call it musty or stale, I usually go with earthy. It describes perfectly where you’re coming from – below ground, a root hiding it’s amazingly intense color under the soil’s surface until it is harvest day.

When growing older, I discovered you could be turned into other wonderful things, not only into pickles. And although I loved my grandparents’ pickling skills, they lacked a little phantasy, I have to admit that much.

So we deepened our relationship – one might even call it blossoming romantic attachment – over soups and salads. Roasting flavors and charring you quite a bit was also part of our special connection. And we fell particularly for each other when discovering the amazing and immense pleasure you offered when served as a carpaccio, along with walnuts, blue cheese and a vinaigrette.

My husband also loves you, by the way. Particularly when you come along “hidden” in a bowl of my homemade herring salad. We might have to get together in this form soon again, now that I think of it.

When we moved from Germany to California, I feared I might never see you again, being the rooty little dirtlover that you are. Germans are tuber lovers after all, could other cultures also share that love? Who would now soil my hands, making me look like a butcher at work or a serial killer caught in flagrante delicto? Who would make me curse when I cut myself and couldn’t see my blood amongst all your oxblood colored juices? But my fears were redundant as I soon discovered.

You were already here. And you had brought your cousins. The family reunion showed me more varieties than I had hoped to dream of. The Gold Beet, your sweet sweet sunshiny cousin. The Candy Cane Beet, your striped sister who looks christmassy and friendly and certainly can pull off wearing those stripes. And you, the Classic Beet, so that if I want to get my hands dirty, I can.

My earthy friend, I am happy we did not have to part. And I am looking eagerly forward to the rest of our joint journey and the culinary adventures we might encounter.

Yours now and for a long long time,






The book at hand: “Plenty” by Yotam Ottolenghi, a fantastic book with “vibrant vegetable recipes”. Page 29 is a delicious mouthwatering recipe for “Seasonal Tempura”.


And to be honest, I still have to finish yesterday’s assignment which is the follow-up to the first “Serial Killer” post. But somehow I am having trouble with that, so I went for Day Fourteen instead hoping that inspiration for the other one would hit me in the face while writing. No punches so far, I can tell you that.


The challenge and the original assignment can be found here: Writing 101 – Day Fourteen



  1. […] The 8th century. Alobar, (former) king somewhere in (future) Bohemia, does not want to die and is on the run. A little later. Kudra, a girl in India and eventually a woman somewhere else, loves fragrances – and life. Way later. Priscilla, waitress in Seattle, has a makeshift lab in her apartment and works hard on some “smelly research”. Ricky, co-waitress, might make that research easier – if Priscilla lets her into her panties. Marcel, professional perfumer in Paris, has a cousin, loves whale masks and is a little off. Another perfumer known as Madame Devalier, based in New Orleans, is obsessed with jasmine and a bottle someone else has. V’lu, her assistant, is likewise obsessed (maybe a little less) and speaks funny. Then there is also someone called Dr. Dannyboy. And someone called Bingo Pajama who apparently has a helmet/hat made out of living bees. And there are beets. A lot of beets. A LOT! I am just in the middle of this book that tackles eternal life, some obscure magic-superimportant-whatever perfume, a dubious bottle, way too many beets (especially if you’re hungry) coming from God knows where, the god Pan and other interesting characters, and… did I mention the confusing beets? I do not have the slightest idea where it might end, but I’m like a fly on a dish with honey… cannot get away, confused how this will continue, will probably die if I don’t find out how this is all connected. I’ll keep you posted… If I already aroused your interest with this description, get reading: Jitterbug Perfume by Tom Robbins (something the lovely Jen talked about in one of her comments). […]


    • Thank you! I haven’t as you will have found out by reading it to the end. But I have to admit – “Jitterbug Perfume” sounds pretty intriguing, maybe I should check it out. If there’s beets, it might be worth it. 🙂


    • A little update on the beet issue. I started “Jitterbug Perfume”, and it is amazing. Confusing, too. 🙂 Will maybe write a book review about it once I am finished. If I do so, am I allowed to mention your name?


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