Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Linguini with Roasted Beets, Tarragon and Caraway

If you are tired of the same old pasta, here is something completely different and totally amazing: : Linguini with Roasted Beets, Tarragon and Caraway.

I don't think I could prepare this dish  for my stubborn Italian family. They believe pasta should only be served with meat-flavored tomato sauce, freshly grated cheese, and sides dishes of meatballs and sausage. How I manage to survive as a Vegan surrounded by a bunch of lamb-shank sucking carnivores,
I will never know. Let's just say the fact that I don't participate in the meat-eating festivities makes family dinners very interesting.

Reserve this recipe for your adventurous, open-minded friends.  They will love it!

The linguini adopts the gorgeous color of the delicate beets in this recipe so the presentation of this dish alone is breath-taking. You won't need sauce or cheese with this meal. It is wonderfully flavored with caraway and tarragon.  Tarragon might not be a very common herb in your kitchen but I highly recommend it. It is commonly used in French cooking and is usually added to chicken, lasagna, fish and egg dishes. Tarragon is one of the main components of Bearnaise sauce.  But it doesn't end there. You can use tarragon to flavor sauces, salad dressings, potatoes, pasta with fresh vegetables.  Add lightly bruised sprigs of tarragon to vinegar and let it steep. Store your Tarragon Vinegar in unique glass bottles and give them away as gifts.

Linguini with Roasted Beets, Tarragon and Caraway

  • 6 medium red beet roots – washed and trimmed
  • ½ cup California Olive Ranch extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 ½ tsp. caraway seeds
  • 1 Tbsp. sea salt for the pasta water
  • 1 lb. (450g) linguini
  • 4 large garlic cloves – skinned and minced
  • 2 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
  • ½ cup reserved pasta cooking water
  • ¼ cup coarsely chopped fresh tarragon
  • ¾ tsp. sea salt or to taste
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • Tarragon sprigs as garnish
  • Extra virgin olive oil for drizzling
Preheat oven to 450ºF. Place the beets in a medium baking dish. Fill the pan with ½-inch of water. Cover tightly with foil and bake for 50 to 60 minutes, until tender. Remove from pan and set aside to cool to room temperature.

Peel the beets with the back of a knife. Using a mandoline, cut the beets in 1/16-inch julienne slices. (If you don’t have a mandoline, slice the beets crosswise in 1/8-inch slices and then cut them in julienned strips.) Transfer to a bowl and set aside. (Chef’s note: The beets can be prepared up to this point and refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 2 days.)

Heat a large, non-stick heavy-bottomed skillet over high heat. Add the oil, caraway seeds and beets. Sauté for 10 to 12 minutes until the beets have caramelized, tossing from time to time (the beet slices will lose their moisture, shrink by half and look very dark around the edges). Remove from heat and set skillet aside.

Bring 6 quarts of water to a boil. When the water is boiling, add the salt and the pasta. Cook pasta until al dente. Drain well.

While the pasta is draining, return skillet to the stove and heat over high heat. When the beets begin to sizzle, add the garlic and vinegar. Sauté for 1 minute only, until the vinegar has completely evaporated and glazed the beet slices. Add the pasta, reserved pasta cooking water, fresh tarragon, salt and pepper. Turn off the heat and toss until the pasta is well coated with the sauce.

Spoon pasta in bowls. Garnish with tarragon sprig, drizzle with a little olive oil and serve immediately.

Deliciously different and Cynfully Good............

No comments:

Post a Comment