Lemony Beet-Greens Pasta

As we strolled through the farmers market yesterday looking at all of the fresh produce picked just hours ago, I stumbled upon some beautiful beets with their lush green leafy stems.  After talking with the shop keeper, I learned that beet greens can easily be cooked down like a spinach to create the perfect addition to a pasta dish.  So voila, this recipe was born.DSC_0613Beets are certainly not for everyone and in my opinion, they taste like dirt.  Ryan loves them in his smoothies and juices, so I decided I would buy a bunch and wing it.

Understanding just how nutritious beets can be, I knew I had to figure out a way to incorporate them into some the of meal.

But that's for a different post.

The greens?  That's this post.  What to do with beet greens?!

DSC_0616I treated them just like a spinach leaf, wilting them down with some olive oil, fresh garlic and a sliced sweet vidalia onion.

DSC_0617The next best thing had to be a lemon.  Lemons give tremendous flavor to bitter tasting foods, and beet greens are a well-deserving leaf to allow some lemon.

Adding a little lemon zest to the mix will really amp up the flavor as well.DSC_0618Topped with a little parmesan cheese and sliced almonds, it turned into the perfect little meal.

The best part was this was our lunch!  It took 15 minutes from start to finish and the results were fabulous.  I guess you can say I'm a lover of beets now?

DSC_0623

Lemony Beet-Green Pasta
 
Ingredients
  • 1 sliced vidalia onion
  • 1 clove garlic, sliced thin
  • whole wheat penne pasta, cooked
  • 1 large bunch of washed beet greens, stems removed
  • olive oil
  • zest of one lemon
  • juice of 2 lemons
  • ⅓-1/2 C white wine
  • salt and pepper
  • parmesan cheese
  • sliced almonds - optional - about 1 TBS per serving
Instructions
  1. In a large pan, heat olive oil on medium and add garlic and onion. Once the onion has softened (about 3 minutes) add in the beet greens, stirring almost constantly, for 2 minutes.
  2. Add in zest, juice and wine and bring to a low simmer. Boiling will reduce the sauce too much.
  3. Add in pasta to combine, season with salt and pepper and serve with parmesan and sliced almonds.
 

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