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almond

Beet Pesto Pasta with Goat Cheese Over Arugula

Beet Pesto Pasta with Goat Cheese Over Arugula

As a kid, I preferred blue to pink. This fared quite nicely for my parents, who loved to dress me in my brother’s hand-me-downs.

But these days, my heart melts for magenta — especially when we’re talking food. And one small beet makes it easy to bring that color to life

arugula

Here, grated beets sweep in to keep pesto from turning that ugly shade of green that normally happens when basil oxidizes. It adds a slight earthiness to the pesto, but is far from the prominent flavor.

Pair with arugula for an added pop of color and goat cheese for a delightful creamy finish.

Beet Pesto Pasta with Goat Cheese Over Arugula

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Vegan Beet Almond Pesto

Vegan Beet Almond Pesto

I’ve never utilized beets as much as I have in this past year. I told you in my last recipe post, beets and I have this whole love-hate relationship going on. And it’s not just a consequence of their stain power.

Their taste is simply not something I crave, at least in large doses. I do enjoy a few roasted beets now and then, and a little grated raw on top of my salads. I find though that a little goes a long way.

What I like most about beets is their color. And here, too, a little goes a long way. (Hello gorgeous pink tabbouleh!) Just one beet was needed to create that vibrant bowl above.

Basil

I make a ton of pesto in the summer, both to eat and to freeze. It’s always so beautiful while spinning away in the food processor. And smells so good, too.

Slow it down, however, and it’ll undress itself from its vibrant green outfit faster than you can get it into a bowl. The air cuts right to the chase. Brownish or not, it still tastes great, but I always find it to be a slightly disappointing sight.

With many recent beet successes, I decided to keep running with the ingredient. Slowly, I’m discovering, perhaps I do love beets after all. How can you not love the site of that pesto up above? Rather than swapping out the basil, I simply added a beet to a variation of my traditional vegan pesto recipe. It by no means becomes the main flavor dominator in this pesto. It will, however, add a small hint of sweet earthiness, and a large dose of stunning, disappointment-free color.

The following makes enough for just over 1 box of pasta. I like to always have a little extra to store in the fridge for sandwich spreads and other various uses.

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Holiday Almond Balls

Almond Balls

These are one of my family’s signature holiday treats. Come Christmas time, and you’ll be sure to find a tin filled with these…although that tin certainly won’t stay full for long! Sweet, fragrant, and extra buttery, what’s not to like about these edible snowballs?

Now, I wouldn’t exactly classify this as one of my healthy recipes. (Okay, so it could be worse. These do have that vitamin E-rich almond-base going for them.) But sometimes a girl’s got to indulge, right? I’m a chocoholic and also happen to have a fairly big sweet tooth. My philosophy: Everything in moderation. Which means every year, I always cease the holidays as a time to pull out the sugar and flour and get baking. Nothing beats the warm smells that flow from the oven or the mouth-watering tastes that ensue! And with that, I’m off…a dinging timer and some cookies in the oven are so sweetly calling my name.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays everyone!

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