Beet Ravoili with Pine Nut Ricotta
I have been tickled by beet-converts, like Warren Haynes (phenomenal guitarist for the Allman Brothers and Government Mule), who never met a beet that he liked until he tried this dish.
This is a stunning recipe, and pretty simple considering the complex and mature flavors and texture. Great for parties, as appetizers or an entrée, and to introduce newcomers to raw and living foods with pomp and pizzazz. Both the beet wrappers and the pine nut ricotta filling keep well in the fridge for a few days, so leftovers will never go to shame.
Yields: 4-6 servings
2-3 nice round beets, peeled and sliced very thinly on mandolin
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons aged balsamic, or balsamic + maple syrup
1 teaspoon umeboshi plum vinegar
1 teaspoon shoyu
pinch sea salt
2 cups pine nuts
1-2 cloves garlic
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons truffle oil, or additional olive oil
1 teaspoon cold-pressed coconut butter
(Omega Nutrition best), or additional olive oil
3-4 tablespoons lemon juice
Smoked salt (see Resource Guide for ordering)
1-1/2 cups finely chopped basil
cup chopped sorrel (optional, for variation)
Olive oil for drizzling
Aged balsamic for drizzling (optional)
Shoyu for dashing (optional)
Basil, chiffonade* cut
Fresh tarragon (optional)
Coarse sea salt
Fresh ground black pepper
Choose nice, round beets, as symmetrical as possible.
Peel beets with a vegetable peeler.
Slice very thinly on a mandolin slicer.
Steam the beets for 3-5 minutes, turning for even cooking.
Toss with olive oil aged balsamic, umeboshi plum vinegar, shoyu and a pinch of salt. Let stand to marinate, turning occasionally for 15 minutes to 1 hour. They may be prepared well ahead of time and stashed in the fridge for up to 2 days.
Note for raw food enthusiasts: The beets may be sliced raw and marinated in the dehydrator, turning occasionally for 4-6 hours to soften if you do not want to use a steaming heat. Love, love.
If you do not have a mandolin, the beets may be boiled for 10 minutes to soften enough to slice very thinly by hand with a sharp knife. Then, toss with above ingredients to marinate.
Pine nut Ricotta:
In a food processor or Vita Mix, grind pine nuts and garlic into a fine meal. Add olive oil, truffle oil, coconut butter, lemon juice (start with 3 tablespoons and add more as needed to taste), and a smoked salt and sea salt. Blend until very smooth. Add a touch of filtered water as necessary to achieve desired consistency, which should resemble ricotta cheese. Season to taste with smoked salt and salt.
Chop basil finely. Try adding a bit of chopped sorrel when available for a lemony lift. Fold into Pine nut Ricotta.
Place single slices of marinated beet on serving plate or platter. Spoon 2 teaspoons or so of Pine Nut Ricotta in the center. Top with another slice of beet and gently press the edges to close. Drizzle with olive oil, aged balsamic, shoyu, sprinkle with sea salt, fresh ground pepper, a pinch of fresh tarragon leaves and chiffonade* basil.
*To chiffonade cut basil: Stack leaves and roll up like a cigar. Slice finly to yield beautiful, delicate ribbons of basil.
Serve at room temperature.
Store in a sealed container in the fridge for up to 2 days.