Beet-Walnut Pesto, Pink Penne Pesto Pasta and a Sandwich

Roasted Beet Garlic Pesto - no cheese

Roasted Beet Garlic Pesto – no cheese

I don’t know what’s wrong with me. I’ve been told to make my posts shorter and put one recipes at a time. But I still end up combining 2-3 dishes and presenting it to you. Ah! Pains of a stubborn unlearning mind.

Pink Penne in Pesto Sauce

Pink Penne in Pesto Sauce

I do have a reason for my repetitive obdurate intentional attempts of long posts – One recipe and its versatility. Like, the guacamole post showed that apart from the dip you could make a sandwich too or the garlic roasted potatoes make for a very good and filling wrap. Hence my loooong posts.

Fair enough? I know, NO. 😉 Well, I hope this post is one of the last few of the combined recipes posts!

Roasted Beets and Garlic

Roasted Beets and Garlic

Roasted Beets along with garlic, just rubbed with a little salt and olive oil makes a very very yummy eat!
I popped one in my mouth, and the flavor was fresh, juicy and succulent. I think, this, on its own is one great way to eat the root.
But – I saved the roasted way for another day, as now I craved for some gorgeous pasta.

Simple Flavourful

Simple Flavourful

This bookmarked recipe of mine was waiting to be tried and tested. With my little daughter in school, husband traveling and my sudden pasta yearnings, the day seemed perfect to experiment.
I slightly tweaked the recipe according to the ingredients available at hand and of course my mood.

Multipurpose Dip

Multipurpose Dip

Beet Walnut Pesto

To make a cup of pesto –

Ingredients

  • 2 medium sized beets, washed, peeled and sliced
  • 4-5 cloves of garlic
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 8-10 walnut pieces, less than a handful
  • Juice of 1/2 a lime – varies according to taste
  • salt to taste
  • 2 tbsp parmesan cheese – optional (I did not use any as I did not have at hand, still the pesto was yumm)

Method

Rub a little olive oil and salt on the sliced beets along with the garlic. Spread on a baking tray and bake at 175 C for 15 minutes or so, till all the juices are released and beets are soft. Alternatively, you could saute them in a frying pan with little olive oil.

Once cool, put the roasted veggies in a mixer, add parmesan, walnuts, lime juice and salt. Grind to a semi smooth paste. Use water if required. Add olive oil. Mix well. Use as required.

The verdict:

The color stuns you, the nutty taste lingers for long and the health quotient gives you enough reason to digg in for more. So with the pink pesto, some corn and fresh basil, I made magic with my Penne.

Basil and Corn  add to the magic

Basil and Corn add to the magic

Pink Penne Pasta

Ingredients

  • 1 cup penne pasta or nay type of pasta – boiled al dente
  • 1/4 cup corn kernels
  • a little butter or olive oil
  • 2 tsp plain flour
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2-3 tbsp beet pesto
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • red chili flakes and oregano as per your taste
  • 2 tbsp fresh basil leaves, chopped

Method

In a pan, heat oil or butter, saute corn. Once done, add flour to it. Let it coat the kernels. Mix in milk and keep stirring till the milk thickens. Now add salt, pepper, oregano, red chili flakes and pesto. Mix well. Stir in the penne. Then garnish with chopped basil leaves. Enjoy it hot!

How easy was that?

Note: Feel Free to add any veggies of your choice – broccoli, carrots, mushrooms, onions and pepper… list is endless.

Pesto n Grilled Veggie Sandwich

Pesto n Grilled Veggie Sandwich

Pesto Grilled Veggie Sandwich

I sautéed some thinly sliced veggies like onions, peppers, carrots and mushrooms, along with salt and pepper powder. Generously applied beet pesto to 2 slices of bread, placed the sautéed veggies and a slice of cheese on one pesto smeared bread. Covered it with the other bread. Grill with little olive oil or butter. Done!
Best Enjoyed with ketch up and hot sauce.

Nutty texture

Nutty texture

Ideas to add beet pesto to your food –

1. Pasta
2. Sandwiches
3. Wraps with cheese and veggies
4. As a dip with crudities or toasted bread or corn chips
5. on crostinis and on canapes.

If you can think of any other way, do drop a line.

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Ragi Beetroot Dosa

Health Personified.

Health Personified.

Want to super kick start your mornings? Want your energy and body resources to last till you call it a day? Want to be healthy, energetic, smart and beautiful…. ok.. I am selling the ragi bit too much ..:).. No dear foodies, ragi/millet flour or beetroot doesn’t add to your face value, but it sure does wonders to thy holy body, nutrition wise.

This wonderful breakfast option is one of my favorite concoctions from the south of India. Milee’s favorite color is pink. She has dresses, shoes, skirts, barbie’s skirts, clips, earrings (.. the list goes on) all in her favorite dye.
We earthlings are very lucky that nature has endowed us with a super nutritious vegetable, Beetroot – in PINK! The addition of this root veggie camouflages the rest. It’s all pink now. Little girls will trip n skip! I being the ever discreet mother try to incorporate the color in her food, an effort to lure her into eating healthy. So a pink dosa was enough to get my 6 year old girl, who is currently tripping on barbies and princesses and fairyland and everything pink!

A ragi dosa is more or less in between a crepe and a pancake. Grated wonder pink root blended in calcium rich nutty grainy millet/ragi flour with the help of yummy fresh buttermilk! Can it get any healthier than this??

Pink power

Pink Power

Ingredients

  • 1 cup ragi/millet flour
  • 2 small beets, grated
  • 1 small onion, minced
  • 1 green chili, minced — optional
  • 2-3 tbsp of coriander leaves, chopped
  • 1 tall glass of buttermilk or 1/2 a bowl of curds
  • salt to taste
  • 2 tbsp gram flour/besan
  • 2 tbsp rice flour, for crispness
  • oil/ghee to make the crepes
  • To serve: chutneys/malgapodi or with cheese spread.. like how my kid eats.

Method

In a big mixing bowl, add millet flor, with gram flour and rice flour. Pour the buttermilk or curds to make a smooth knot free batter. Now to this add, the grated minced veggies(beet, onion, green chili and coriander) and salt. Mix well. Check consistency. Should be pourable and spreadable. Don’t be shocked by the pinkness of the batter 🙂

Now, on a hot flat griddle or dosa tawa, pour a ladle full of batter, spread evenly. The thickness will be more than a thin crepe but lesser than a pancake. Because of the veggies the batter refuses to thin out. Now, drizzle some oil/ghee on the dosa. Cover with a lid and roast on low flame. After 3-4 minutes, flip, and cook without the lid.

The result is a deep maroonish spread instead of the bright pink one you promised your little princess. Heat transforms the pink into a deep maroon, slight brown shade. My tact comes into play when I lie that the color would change again under the juices of her digestive tract. Hey! All is fair in food, kids and health. So kindly, non mothers don’t judge.

Serve hot with Chutney/cheese spread.

A Satvic Diet

A Satvic Diet

Note: You could substitute beetroot with grated carrot, bottle gourd or pumpkin or any healthy yucky vegetable your kid refuses to eat. Hide it in his food and he will not know. I know your superman cannot be fooled easily, but you are the superman’s mother/father… so come on, you can come up with some twisted idea to steal the goodness into his diet.


For those, who don’t know what a Dosa is:

Dosas are Indian savoury fermented crepes. Traditionally made from rice batter and black lentils. It is indigenous to and is a staple dish in the southern Indian states of Karnataka , Andhra Pradesh and Kerala — according to Wikipedia.
But according to me, dosas are versatile, varied types made from varied grains with varied effects on your taste buds 🙂 Have’nt met anyone who dislikes these yummy crepes.

Benefits of Ragi/Millet Flour:
Nutritionally, when ragi is used as a whole grain, it is higher in protein and minerals in comparison to rice. It is also rich in fibre and therefore suitable for people trying to lose weight. Ragi, unlike wheat does not contain gluten (a protein found in wheat), and can be easily consumed by people with wheat intolerance. Ragi is a wonder cereal grain as it has numerous health benefits:

  • A great source of calcium
  • Energy for weight watchers
  • Beats high sugar and cholestrol