Monday, April 19, 2010

Spring Pasta with Beets

I like the idea of "Head to Tail" eating (also known as "Tip to Tail", "Nose to Tail", etc.). This food philosophy embraces the use of all parts of an animal, vegetable, etc. to maximize your investment and to lessen your waste and impact on the environment. This might sound scary (and I'll be the first to admit that there are some things that are just NOT meant to be eaten), but vegetables are an easier way for me to ease into this mindset, and beets are a great way to dive in.

As far as environmental impact and waste go, vegetables are obviously a very earth-friendly choice, especially if you are supporting local farmers markets (or growing your own). Since I am living in an apartment with an iffy garbage disposal, composting is not the most convenient option. Using more parts of my veggies means less stinky garbage!
This pasta was adapted from a combo of recipes I've seen on epicurious and  It's very simple, and follows the formula "Starch + Veggie + Greens + Protein = Full one pot meal" (and this one comes out a beautiful magenta color from the beets!).

Beet Green Pasta
Serves 2

Orrechiette pasta
2 beets (boiled or roasted with a little bit of olive oil in the oven, then peeled)
Greens from beets, washed and chopped
Pine nuts
Salt and pepper to taste

Boil your noodles separately from your beets if you are going that route.  In a saute pan, toast the pine nuts and add cubed, cooked beets with a little olive oil.  Add a bit of reserved pasta water to the pan and throw in the beet greens until just beginning to wilt.  Mix with pasta and enjoy!

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