We Got the Beet

April 10, 2008 at 8:15 pm | Posted in beet puree | 16 Comments

My childhood introduced me to canned beets, disgusting! I remember my father eating them…all slimy with that weird taste and texture. I didn’t even like the smell.

But in my efforts to do better, I have returned to the beet. First was the Beet Pancakes. Since then I’ve been uninspired to try again. That is until I borrowed my sister’s copy of Bon Appetit’s 50th anniversary issue from October 2006. Within was a recipe by Evan Kleiman for Beet Gnocchi with Rosemary.

Beet Gnocchi with Rosemary

  • 3/4 cup roasted beet puree
  • 1 pound fresh ricotta cheese
  • 1 large egg
  • 3/4 cup Parmesan cheese
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups flour, divided
  • 1 stick unsalted butter
  • 4 fresh rosemary sprigs

Place beets in a large bowl. Stir in ricotta, eggs, cheese, salt and pepper. Mix in 1 cup of the flour. (Dough can be made one day ahead, cover and refrigerate).

Place remaining 1/2 cup flour in a bowl. Lightly dust baking sheet with flour. Using a teaspoon measure, scoop dough into rounds and transfer to bowl with flour. Then with the tinges of a fork, press down into the dough and then transfer to baking sheet. Do this in batches. (Gnocchi can be prepared 6 hours ahead. Cover and refrigerate).

Melt butter with rosemary in a large skillet over medium heat.

Working in batches, cook gnocchi in large pot of simmering salted water until gnocchi float to the surface, about 2 minutes. Continue to cook 1 1/2 minutes longer. Using a slotted spoon, transfer gnocchi to skillet with butter and rosemary.

At this point you can transfer the gnocchi to a plate and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. I wanted a firmer gnocchi so after I finished all of the gnocchi in the butter, I put them on a plain hot skillet. The butter made a great crispy exterior.

And the verdict? My family loved them! Hubby, daughter and son! I could have easily cut this recipe in half, it makes a lot of gnocchi!

Along with our Beet Gnocchi, I wanted my family to see beets in a more natural state. So I also did a simple plate of roasted beets and carrots, some whole wheat pita bread, and a bowl of chickpea puree.

What did we think? My daughter was willing to try the beets, but did not like them. My son, no. As for my hubby and I (both non-beet eaters) were pleasantly surprised. Fresh roasted beets are good. I will be doing this again.

To roast fresh beets: Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Wrap beets in foil and roast until tender, about 1 hour. Cool and then slip skins off the beets.

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Pink Pancakes with Beets

October 11, 2007 at 8:48 pm | Posted in beet puree, breakfast | 1 Comment
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So, I was dying to make Pink Pancakes for my daughter. I got up this morning, pulled my beet puree out of the refrigerator and added it to the pancake batter. The pancakes cooked nicely and were a beautiful shade of pink. My daughter was enchanted and ate them up (butter and syrup helped too).

The kicker was when my son asked for blue pancakes. Not having a “blue” veggie puree, I saw the spinach and asked him if he would like green pancakes. With hesitation, I added the spinach puree to my regular Bisquick pancake mixture. It looked a bit leafy, so I added a couple drops of green food coloring to help even out the look. And his verdict, “MMMMM”. He ate SPINACH Pancakes!

Tip: Trader Joes has ready-to-eat steamed and peeled Baby Beets. I just opened up the package and dropped them in my food processor. After pureeing, I put the beet puree into snack size ziplock bags, measuring out 1/2 cup per bag.

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