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Beet-Pistachio Ravioli with Paprika-Cream Sauce

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1 lb (500 g) red beets
2 tbsp (30 ml) pistachio nuts, finely ground
1/2 cup (125 g) asiago cheese
1/2 tbsp (7 ml) chopped fresh sage
1 full portion of homemade pasta or lasagne sheets (see box)
Sea salt and freshly ground pepper
3 tbsp (45 ml) extra-virgin olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 medium shallot, diced
1 tbsp (15 ml) sweet paprika
1/4 cup (60 ml) dry white wine
2/3 cup (160 ml) cream
2 tsp (10 ml) maple syrup or honey

Cook the unpeeled beets until soft then rinse them under cold water. Peel the beets, cut them into chunks and pulse in food processor three or four times. Add the nuts, cheese, and sage, season with salt and pepper and blend thoroughly in the food processor.

Using a pasta machine, roll out the pasta into thin sheets and cut into twelve, 3' (7.5 cm) squares. Lay out half the pasta squares and place one spoonful of the beet filling in the centre of each. Brush the edges of the squares with a wet pastry brush; lay another square on top. Press all edges together using your fingers and pinch the squares together to remove the air.

In a large saucepan, heat the oil over medium heat and saut?he garlic and shallot until golden brown. Add the paprika and stir for 30 seconds then add the wine, cream, and maple syrup. Reduce by half. Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.

Drop the ravioli one by one into the boiling water (keep the flat side facing up) and stir gently to prevent the pasta from sticking to the bottom of the pot. Cook for four minutes. (If using lasagne sheets, cook for five minutes.) Drain thoroughly, place on serving plates and pour sauce over top. Serve immediately. Yields six large ravioli.

Source: alive #253, November 2003

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