Behold, the prettiest pasta dish to grace my kitchen: beet pesto!
Seriously, this meal was such a beautiful, lovely pink color, I can’t get over it! But I should also mention that it’s delicious; don’t just make it for its looks! That would probably hurt the recipe’s feelings. It really is a great thing to make to impress company, just don’t wear white like I did. I mean, we all know beets stain, so I should’ve known to wear an apron and/or non-white t-shirt to prepare this dinner.
You can skip the greens if your beets don’t come with them, but that was actually my favorite part, so I wouldn’t recommend it.
Also, I really need pretty white serving dishes to photograph my bloggy dinners, because this Pyrex bowl does not do justice to what my beet pesto pasta looked like in person. You’re just going to have to make this for yourself to see how beautiful it really is!
Beet Pesto Pasta from Honest Fare
For the pesto:
- 2 medium sized beets peeled and cut into cubes (about 1.5 cups worth)
- 2 cloves garlic
- 2 sprigs of fresh thyme
- 1/3 cup sliced almonds
- 1/4 cup parmesan cheese
- 1/4 cup olive oil plus some for drizzling
- Kosher salt and cracked black pepper to taste
For the rest of the pasta:
- Beet greens washed and roughly chopped
- Ricotta cheese
- 1lb whole wheat pasta of your choice
- Splash sherry or rice vinegar
For the pesto:
- Coat bottom of pan in olive oil and heat. Sauté beets with salt, pepper, garlic and fresh thyme on medium high heat with lid on. Add a little water to pan if you encounter any sticking. Set aside to cool.
- Pulse almonds in food processor until they are the texture of raw grits or coarse meal. Add room temperature beets, parmesan cheese and 1/4 cup olive oil. Whiz until smooth, adding more olive oil to keep things moving if necessary.
For the pasta:
- Add small drizzle of olive oil to a pan and heat to medium high. Add beet greens to pan with small splash of rice or sherry vinegar and cover pan with lid. Remove lid once greens begin to steam and wilt a little, and continue to cook uncovered until just tender. Remove from heat and keep covered until pasta is ready.
- Salt a pot of water and boil pasta to your liking, then strain and reserve 1/2 cup of pasta water. Toss hot pasta in beet pesto while slowly adding a little pasta water to help incorporate the pesto evenly on the pasta.
- Serve pasta warm, topped with beet greens and ricotta cheese and a little drizzle of olive oil.