Soba Noodles with Beet Green-Miso Pesto

Recipe Author: Conne Ward Cameron

This recipe from chow.com used Swiss chard in the original, but I think the beet greens (same family, after all) will work beautifully. Easy, healthy, vegan. Love the idea of making a pesto with miso. You could add some daikon in here, too.

Ingredients:

Kosher salt 12 ounces beet greens (about 1 bunch) 4 medium garlic cloves, halved 1/4 cup red miso paste 2 1/2 teaspoons rice vinegar Freshly ground black pepper 12 ounces dried soba noodles 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon vegetable oil 1 medium carrot, peeled and cut into 1-1/2-inch matchsticks 1 sheet dried, roasted seaweed (nori), cut into 9 pieces and thinly sliced (optional)

Preparation:

Bring a large pot of heavily salted water to a boil over high heat. Meanwhile, cut off the beet greens about 1-inch from the top of the beets. Slice the stems into 1/4-inch pieces. Place in a small bowl and set aside.

Stack the leaves and coarsely chop.

Add the beet leaves and garlic to the boiling water, stir to combine and blanch until the leaves are just wilted and tender, about 2 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the leaves and garlic to a food processor fitted with a blade attachment (it’s OK if some of the blanching water gets into the food processor). Reserve the pot and water.

Add the miso paste and vinegar to the food processor and season with pepper. Process until a smooth paste forms, stopping and scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed, about 2 minutes total. Leave the chard pesto in the food processor.

Return the water in the pot to a boil over high heat. Add the soba noodles, stir to separate them, and cook according to the package directions or until al dente. Drain the noodles in a colander and rinse under cold water until cool. With the noodles still in the colander, drizzle with 1 teaspoon of the oil and toss to coat; set aside.

Dry the pot, add the remaining 1 tablespoon of oil, and heat over medium heat until shimmering. Add the reserved beet stems and carrots, season with salt and pepper, and cook, stirring occasionally, until crisp-tender, about 3 minutes. Remove the pot from the heat.

Add the reserved soba noodles and beet green pesto to the pot and toss to combine and evenly coat everything with the pesto. Taste and season with salt and pepper as needed. Transfer to a serving bowl and garnish with the seaweed, if using. Serve warm or at room temperature.

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