A Taste of Fall: Cheesey Beet Shells

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Beet PastaI had the pleasure of dining with Michelle of the accidental scientist on Tuesday, and find my head still reeling over there being another blogging foodie in Eugene! It’s about time! It’s so funny that we’re practically next door work neighbors too. We walked over to Cafe Marche at the Art Museum, and treated oursleves to some wonderful fall flavors (brownie’s a seasonal flavor right?).

I ordered a composed salad after seeing a co-worker have this cute salad of different mounds of shaved vegetables. Michelle took her ordering cue from the great looking soup that was being sent out as we made our way to the cash register to order: pumpkin soup with slices of bread, pear and cheese. We both scored! Michelle’s soup was wonderfully earthy with root vegetable flavors lurking in the background. My salad was a collection of little piles: sliced beets, shredded carrots with dill dressing, shredded celery root with creamy dressing and a center mound of bitter greens.

That evening, Sweets and I were zonked out- both tired, not wanting to fuss over dinner, but both decidely hungry! After agreeing to not order pizza, we cooked up a box of Annie’s Pasta (organic mac-n-cheese, but more specifically for those of us who are anti-Kraft Foods), and added some fun stir in flavors: shredded beets, toasted walnuts, and a smidgen of blue cheese. The result is a gloriously purple-pink pasta that is cheesey and all sorts of good. I could see this dish working really well for most kids (minus the blue cheese and walnuts?). If they’ll eat blue ketchup, how about some purple pasta?

Cheesey Beet Shells with Toasted Walnuts and Blue Cheese

Beet Pasta

In a 350F oven, toast 1/4 cup of walnuts till lightly brown. Remove and allow to cool slightly. Crush with the bottom of a wine bottle (or something similar) to break the toasted walnuts into smaller pieces.

Cook up one 6 oz box of Annie’s Shell’s and White Cheddar according to the package directions. This includes mixing in the powdered cheese, with a drizzle of milk and smidge of butter, all as directed on the box.

Stir into the mac-n-cheese, 1 1/2 oz of crumbled up blue cheese, the toasted and crushed walnuts, and also grate in (with a cheese grater) two cooked beets (canned or ones cooked in a 400F oven till fork tender and then peeled). Stir away and oooo and ahh at the color. Finish with a light dusting of ground pepper and enjoy!


posted October 21st, 2005 at 9:23 am

This looks a bit outrageous. The color is great. I’ll admit I’m skeptical but I loved instant mac n cheese as a kid (in Canada we call it Kraft Dinner and it’s something like a national dish) and I’m not against it in principle. My kid loves beets (sometimes). Maybe we’ll give it a try.

- mzn
posted October 21st, 2005 at 9:48 am

ooh…ahh…what a fabulous shade of puce! this, i must try. thanks for the recipe…

  • So that’s what puce is? I guess I should know this, claiming to be an artist and all… I guess I always thought puce was a pea green color!

    By Jove, check out this website for more interesting colors like: Coquelicot, Jonquil, Primrose, Evening Primrose, Pomona Green, and the wonderful Puce!


- J
posted October 22nd, 2005 at 10:08 am

Hi McAuliflower – It was truly a pleasure to dine with you as well! I’m so glad that we were finally able to meet and eat! Especially since you ‘live’ only a mere short walk away. Lovely descriptions of the delicious food, too. I love your twist on Annies! We eat a lot of Annies too, and I have a refrigerator drawer full of beets! Thanks for the new suggestion!

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