Wash the beets, but do not peel or cut them, for the juice escapes very easily. Boil in cold salted water, two or three hours, in winter, one hour in summer. When tender, take them out of the water on a fork, and peel. Slice while hot, into a dish, sprinkle with pepper and salt, and put dots of butter among the slices. Serve covered.
Those left from dinner may be heated over by steaming them ; or they may be pickled, by pouring over them cold vinegar, in which they should stand several hours before being served.