This section is from the book "Hints To Housewives On How To Buy, How To Care For Food", by Mayor Mitchel's Food Supply Committee. Also available from Amazon: Hints to Housewives on How to Buy, How to Care for Food.
Beets are among our most useful vegetables, since they may be had all through the summer and may also be stored in good condition for winter use. Sometimes beets are cut in small pieces, after boiling, and served with white sauce, but the most common as well as the most palatable way of serving them is with butter.
Wash the beets, being careful not to break the skin. Put into a stew-pan and cover generously with boiling water and boil until tender. Young beets will cook in one hour. As the beets grow old the time of cooking must be increased. In winter this vegetable becomes so hard it may require four or more hours of steady boiling to soften it. It is then only suitable for pickling in vinegar after being thoroughly boiled.
When the young beets are cooked, take them from the boiling water and drop them into cold water. Rub off the skin Cut the beets in thin slices and season with salt and butter. Serve at once.