Just a forewarning, this makes A LOT of pasta. Be prepared to feed an army or have leftovers for days, maybe even weeks.
Penne with Beets, Beet Greens, Goat Cheese and Walnuts
2 bunches beets, with greens, trimmed and scrubbed - Save the beet greens (side note: I didn't actually get my beets at the farmer's market, I know....but they didn't have the beets with the greens still attached, so I had to go to my local supermarket.)
8 oz whole wheat penne
1/4 extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup heavy cream
4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1 tbsp chopped tarragon (I couldn't find this so I used basil instead)
1/4-1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
4 oz fresh goat cheese, crumbled (1/2 cup)
3/4 cup walnuts
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Bake beets wrapped in foil for about 45 minutes. In the meantime, wash the beet greens and cut into 1/2 inch wide strips, set aside. When the beets are done, cool them under cold water and peel skin off. Trim ends and cut into 1/2 inch thick slices.
Cook pasta until al dente, about 8 minutes.
In a skillet, heat oil. Add garlic, basil, and pepper flakes, cook about 1-2 minutes. Add beets and greens, until the greens are wilted.
Drain the pasta and add it to the pan. Stir in goat cheese and creme and bring to a simmer. Season with salt and pepper. Sprinkle with walnuts.
By the way, I've been fine with eating beets from a can. It just seemed like too much work to cook them in the oven. But, it was so worth it. They smelled so good! No more canned beets for me.
Should you eat a sizable portion of this beety meal, just be prepared for a health freak-out the next day. Just a warning. You're probably not hemorrhaging. But, who am I to say? I'm no doctor.
And here's my kitty. She does not eat beets. She's cute, isn't she? Sweet? Well....