cup roasted whole almonds (optional) or 3/4 cup roasted walnut, freshly ground (optional)
Select fresh tender beets and cut off the tops and roots. Wash the beets, without removing the skins, and boil in a large pot with ample water.
Meanwhile, clean the beet greens with the stems; add to the pot after the beets have cooked 30 minutes. When beets are tender, remove and strain off the liquid.
Peel the beets and cut them into round slices; chop up the greens. Mound greens in center of a platter and surround them with the beet slices.
Dress with olive oil, lemon juice and salt and pepper to taste. Serve with the skordalia (the skordalia is served as a 'meze' - in it's own bowl, and dibs and dabs of the skordalia are enjoyed with forkfuls of the beet slices and/or greens). Make sure you have a good quality, artisanal loaf of bread to enjoy with this.
To make Skordalia: Clean garlic and mash it completely (you may use food processor or blender). Mash in potatoes, one by one, until you have a thick puree. Alternately, add the oil and vinegar, beating constantly getting rid of all lumps (you want it very smooth). Many people like to add almonds or walnuts to skordalia, but this is optional.