What better simple pleasure is there than a fine cheese? Well if you’re me, not much! Truly, I can make an entire meal out of cheese and it’s practically a major food group in my diet. BMW doesn’t consider it a meal unless there’s meat involved and I sorta feel the same way about cheese. Ok maybe not every meal but you know what I’m sayin! I usually find just about any excuse to add a sprinkle here or there to juuuuuust about anything haha.
This recipe came about after a few things happened. First, I attended this amazing cheese event with Parmigiano Reggiano. Yes! There is actually a whole entire consorzio over in Italy dedicated to Parmesan! Not to be confused with the green bottle of ’90’s childhoods but actual real, delicious parmesan. The event was hosted by Parmigiano Reggiano at Antonelli’s Cheese Shop with local chef extrodianire Drew Curren of Italic, Easy Tiger, 24 Diner, arro and soon to be Irene’s. At the event we tasted three different types of parmesan and they walked us through the differences in each. It can’t be called Parmigiano Reggiano unless it’s been aged for at least 12 months and has the official dotted rind, so look for that when you’re shopping. We got to taste the milder 14 month cheese which is hard to find in the US simply because after it ages for hard to get here in time to be sold as a 14 month. The 24 month is the most common and middle of the road perfect for everything cheese and the 36 month is a bolder, stinker cheese that can add that distinct flavor to any dish!
My go-to weeknight meals usually involve something with one pot and carbs. Oh and cheese too. Every now and then I throw in something green to make myself feel better it healthier. My old favorite was cilantro pesto pasta with a poached egg. All the yums! Super spicy and comforting. Because spicy food is comforting to me. I just love it. If my eyes are watering, my nose is running and my mouth is on fire, then the spice level is juuuuust right. Yeah, that kind of spice. Recently, I’ve been taking it down just a notch. A little bit of spice, ok ok maybe a little bit more than a little, but not crazy like I used to.
Oh yes. It’s beet pasta. I’ve been wanting to make this recipe for a while. I’ve been pining away and found a few recipes that looked easy enough to take a go at. I will say I have a theory that beets were never as popular as they are today until the advent of Pinterest. That bright fuscia color is so eye-catching! I mean I know I am a sucker for it. I wasn’t always a big beet fan. They have that very distinct, uh, dirt taste. Like they have an earthy flavor that reminds me of dirt. But I have found that pairing beets with certain flavors makes for some killer combos, like Beet Lemonade, Beet Waffles and pretty much anything with goat cheese and beets. There is something about sweet and beet too. So, I have definitely learned to love this crazy, colorful root vegetable.
After looking at several recipes, I have been dreaming of making homemade pasta. I always thought pasta making would be hard, but the posts were so pretty and made it look so simple and easy. Several of those bloggers even said it was. Well, wrong, haha. This recipe was not that easy. Maybe it is because it took me a while to get my beet puree and flour ratios correct. But pasta making is hard, but fun, but really time consuming. So pick your battles and only tackle it if you’ve got a couple of hours to devote to the process. Hopefully this batch of dough will last me a few meals. There was nothing super difficult about it, just takes a little elbow grease and time. And I only wish I would have had step by step photos, so lucky for you, I took these and hopefully it will make it a little easier on you 🙂
2 large beets
6 cups of flour + more for rolling out dough
1 tablespoon of olive oil
1 teaspoon of kosher salt
Makes 6-8 servings
Start off by peeling the beets. Then wrap them tightly with foil and roast for 40 minutes at 450 degrees.
Let the beet cool a bit, then dice them up.
In a blender or food processor, puree beets, eggs, olive oil and salt until smooth. About 1 minute.
Combine beet puree and flour. Start with three cups of flours and mix on slow with the dough hook until well combined. Add a cup of flour at a time until all remaining flour is combined. Dough should be a little tacky, and forming a ball in the mixer and not sticking to the sides of the bowl. If dough is too wet, add more flour. If dough is dry, add water, one teaspoon at a time.
Next knead the dough by hand for 5-7 minutes on a floured surface.
Then roll out dough. Be sure to get it nice and thin. As thin as you can get it without ripping.
You can use a pasta cutter like the ones I have, or use a knife or pizza roller to cut the pasta into the shapes like you want.
To make bowtie pasta, use the pasta cutter then pinch the center of the shape.
Once you finish rolling out and making your little bowties, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta, it is ok if they are still a little moist, they will just cook faster. Add a little olive oil to the water and stir to make sure that the pasta doesn’t stick to one another.
Drain pasta and serve with your favorite dressing, sauce or topping. I dressed my pasta with this lemon shallot vinaigrette dressing. Which is delicious on everything, so make a lot and thank me later.
This would be great topped with fresh parmesan, sauteed mushrooms or tossed with spinach.