All too often I throw away the green leafy tops of beets. I have heard rumors that they taste good and can be eaten, so I feel guilty when I toss' em. Not this time. I had a TON of beet greens leftover from all the beets I roasted up for eating and cake-making last week, and I was determined to use them in a delicious way.
This recipe comes together so fast. I swear, after you get the water boiling it takes 10 minutes to get it ready for serving. And make sure you wait till the last minute to cook if serving to guests. This pasta is best piping hot fresh off the stove.
Here's all it is: sauteed beet greens, onions, and garlic mixed with whole wheat pasta and sauced with a small log of fresh goat cheese melted with a little cream.
I tasted it like this and it was good, but throwing in some parmesan and toasted pine nuts really made it great. So great, I had two servings. And I don't even really like pasta.
Creamy Beet Green Pasta, adapted from Food Blogga
1/2 cup pine nuts (easily substitute sliced almonds or walnuts)
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
1/2 pound whole wheat pasta (I used fettuccine)
beet greens from 2 bunches beets, cleaned and chopped
1 small shallot, or 1/2 small onion, diced finely
2 garlic cloves, minced
salt, pepper, and fresh ground nutmeg
1/2 cup heavy cream
4 oz log of goat cheese
Put a large pot of water on to boil and while it gets hot, toast your pine nuts and grate your parmesan. Then chop your onion and garlic (your beet greens should already be chopped but if not, do it now). Now everything is ready to go.
When the water boils, add a lot of salt and your pasta. In the same large skillet you used to toast your nuts, heat a couple tablespoons olive oil and saute your shallot and garlic for a minute, then add your beet greens. Cook and stir until greens are wilted (about 4-5 minutes), then season with salt, pepper, and nutmeg.
Add cream and goat cheese and use tongs to stir together. The goat cheese will melt. Scoop out your cooked pasta with a big strainer and add to creamy greens and toss. Save a cup of hot starchy pasta water in case you need help melting the goat cheese.
Serve with grated parm and toasted nuts.
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