You can buy beets already cooked and peeled at Trader Joe's, or you can roast a bunch of them at home. To do this, I wrap the beets in aluminum foil, put them in a roasting dish, and pop them in a 400 degree oven. Test one for doneness with a fork or knife and pull them out when they're soft. After they've cooled, take them out of the foil and peel them. The skin will just rub off- but it is messy work. You can also boil them instead of roasting them. Then I slice them or dice them depending on how I want to eat them, drizzle them with balsamic vinegar, and refrigerate them until I need them.
I like them best in salads and sandwiches. If you also have some greens on hand, whether beet greens or not, and walnuts, you have everything you need for beet walnut pasta. Add them to any salad, or make a sandwich of toast, butter or mayonnaise, sliced beets, and sliced hard-boiled eggs. Top it with a squeeze of lemon, salt and pepper.
Beet and Walnut Pasta
Everything I've been eating has been meaty, heavy, and custardy. I'm ready for a break. This is simple and light and probably the only things you need to make sure you have for this are the beets, the pasta, and the parmesan. All the other ingredients you will already have on hand or you can alter.
1 pound Pasta
1 bunch of beets or 2 bunches of baby beets with greens
toasted walnuts, pine nuts, or almonds
a few cloves of garlic
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
grated Parmesan cheese
1. If the beets are small, boil them in water until they are fork-tender. If they're large beets, wrap them tightly in foil and bake them in a 400 degree oven until they are tender. Let them cool, peel them, slice them, and dress them in balsamic vinegar.
2. Wash the beet greens well, slice them, and sauté them in a pan with olive oil, sliced garlic, and red pepper flakes. Season with salt and set aside.
3. Cook the pasta in salted hot water according to the package directions and strain.
4. Toss together the pasta, greens, beets, and nuts. Sprinkle generously with parmesan and season with salt and pepper.
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