This dish is a healthy homage to one of my childhood favourites. Ravioli. In this version whipped goat cheese is sealed between two thin layers of raw beet and garnished with a rich and vibrant pesto. The tangy botanical beet envelope yields a completely different culinary experience from traditional pasta ravioli, however the effect is no less satisfying. The flavors are fresh and flavorful, perfect for welcoming spring.
Many don’t realize that beets can be eaten raw. In fact, they are arguably MORE delicious, and definitely more nutritious in their natural state. Their nutritional benefits include: high fiber, vitamins, minerals, and unique plant derived anti-oxidants, many of which are lost when they are subjected to cooking temperatures.
To further increase the healthfulness of this dish, I chose to use walnuts in the pesto, rather than pine nuts. Walnuts are filled with omega-3’s and also pack a powerful protein punch, which is perfect for a vegetarian dish. Microgreens (I used a mixed variety, but any will do) provide an extra flourish atop the already brilliant ravioli.
- 1 bunch of fresh, organic basil (washed and de-stemmed)
- 2 cloves of minced garlic
- 1/2 cup of walnuts
- 1 teaspoon of sea salt
- 1/4 cup of olive oil
- black pepper to taste
Combine ingredients in a food processor and blend until a smooth consistency is achieved, around 2-3 minutes (stopping every so often to scrape down sides of bowl). Set aside
- 2 beets (I used 1 red beet and 1 candy-striped beet)
- 4 ounces of goat cheese (whipped with black pepper and 1/4 tsp. of fresh nutmeg)
- microgreens or arugula (to garnish)
Thinly slice beets using a mandolin (or very carefully with a sharp knife). Spread a thin layer of your goat cheese spread on half of the round disks, cover with the other half and seal them by gently pressing around the edges with your thumb (or leave unsealed for a more rustic look). Dollop a 1/2 teaspoon (or more) of pesto on each ravioli and garnish with cracked ground pepper and microgreens. Enjoy!