Sunday, November 13, 2011

Beet infused penne with feta and beet greens

My love affair with beets and their greens continue. This time they are incorporated into a pasta. I roast the beets with a light drizzle of olive oil which helps to concentrate their sweetness. The greens I blanch and mix into a sauce with onions, garlic, a little pinch of chili flakes for kick and fresh plum tomatoes.

I like to to use whole wheat pasta for the hearty sauces and this is one of them - the beets give the pasta a gorgeous hue. Then I finally top it off with some coarsely grated feta cheese. The picture is not the best, but you get the idea - nighttime photography is not my strong point, but it tasted great!

Penne with beets, greens and feta

8 oz beets (3 small beets)
One bunch beet greens
1 large clove of garlic, finely minced
1 1/2 medium white onions, finely chopped (a little over a cup of chopped onions)
2 plum tomatoes, finely chopped
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
3 small calabrian dried chilies chopped or 1/2 teaspoon dried chili flakes
1 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 F.
  2. Clean and trim the beets and place them in a small baking dish. Drizzle 1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil over the beets and sprinkle 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt. Cover tightly with foil and roast in the middle rack of the oven for 40 minutes to an hour. Remove from the oven and make a cut in the foil to release the steam. Then carefully remove the foil so as not to burn yourself. Let the beets cool and then remove the skin and chop into 1/2 inch pieces.
  3. Heat a large non-stick skillet over medium high heat with 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil. Add the onions and garlic and saute for 5 minutes till the onions are a light brown. Add the dried chili peppers, chopped tomatoes and 3/4 teaspoon salt and cook for 5 minutes over medium heat till the tomatoes start to break down and create a sauce.
Note: For more recipes with beets click here.

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