Planning on impressing your boo this Valentine’s Day with a home-cooked dinner for two? Go you! In our book, a meal cooked with love is way more alluring than reservations at a restaurant booked solid with dozens of other couples all clamoring for a moment of romance.
If you’ve yet to pick a recipe for the occasion, let us suggest one that is magnificently on-theme: pink pasta! It comes to us courtesy of FreshDirect’s very own food stylist, Emerald. You don’t need any special ingredients, mainly just some good fresh pasta and beets for that stunning color. Learn how to make it below!
Pink Pasta with Beets
What You’ll Need:
3 medium red beets, trimmed and peeled
2 tablespoons + ¼ cup olive oil
½ cup boiling water, plus more for cooking pasta
4 ounces ricotta cheese
Salt and pepper
10 ounces thick fresh pasta noodles, such as bucatini or fettucine
A few tablespoons walnuts, toasted and roughly chopped
2 tablespoons julienned basil leaves
Finely-grated Parmesan cheese, for garnish.
What to Do:
Take your prepped beets and shred them in a food processor fitted with a shredding blade, or grate them on the large holes of a box grater. Heat 2 tbsp olive oil in a pan over medium heat. Add the shredded beets and cook, tossing occasionally, until they begin to soften, 4-5 minutes. Pour in ½ c boiling water and cook until mostly evaporated and beets are very soft, 3-5 minutes more.
Meanwhile, take the lemon and using a vegetable peeler, peel off two 2-inch-long strips of zest. Slice very thinly lengthwise into a julienne and set aside. Finely zest the remainder of the lemon peel into a small bowl. Lastly, halve the lemon and squeeze out the juice into another bowl.
Transfer the fully-cooked beets to a food processor or blender and add ¼ c olive oil and process into a smooth paste. Add the ricotta, finely-zested lemon peel, and a pinch of salt. Process again until smooth.
Bring a pot of heavily-salted water to a boil and cook fresh pasta according to package instructions. Before draining, reserve about a cup of pasta cooking water.
Transfer the cooked pasta, about ¾ of the beet mixture, lemon juice, and a splash of pasta water to your empty pan and toss to combine. Add more of the beet mixture and/or pasta water as needed to coat the noodles in a loose sauce.
Divide pasta between two plates. Garnish with walnuts, basil leaves, julienned lemon peel, a bit of grated Parmesan, and some freshly-ground pepper.
Would you like some wine with that? Browse Valentine’s Day bubbly and more from FreshDirect Wines & Spirits.