Cristina Cooks: Farfalle with Roasted Beets and Walnut Pesto
• 1 bunch beets, greens reserved, washed, and dried
• 2 tablespoons olive oil
• Salt and pepper to taste
• ½ cup toasted walnuts + 2 tablespoons whole for garnish
• 3 garlic cloves, 2 smashed and 1 sliced
• 2 cups fresh Basil leaves, picked and cleaned
• 2 cups Parsley, picked and cleaned
• 1 ½ cups extra virgin olive oil
• ½ lemon, juiced and zested
• 1-pound farfalle (bow tie pasta)
• 2 teaspoons crushed red pepper
• 4 ounces goat cheese
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. To roast beets, tr im greens from eat beet leaving a bit of the top so they don’t dry out in the oven. Season with salt, pepper, and olive oil and place in a shallow baking dish. Add a ¼ inch of water to the pan, cover with foil and roast until fork tender. Once cool, peel and cut into small wedges. Set aside.
To prepare pesto, combine walnuts and smashed garlic in a food processor and grind until chopped fine. Add basil and parsley and pulse until finely chopped. Gradually stream in the olive oil until blended. Season with salt, pepper, lemon juice, and set aside.
Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain, reserving ½ cup of the pasta water.
In a saute pan, heat olive oil and saute sliced garlic until translucent. Add in beet greens and cook until wilted. Set aside. Return the pasta to the pot. Add ½ cup of the pesto and mix well. Add ¼ cup of the reserved pasta water. Stir in beets, beet greens and red pepper flakes. Dot with dollops of goat cheese and serve immediately.
You can store pesto in an airtight plastic container or glass jar. It will last for 3 to 4 days in the fridge.
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