Recipe from a Guest, Mary Ann Coletti
This is one of my favorite pasta dishes. Simple and very satisfying. It comes out of Michele Scicolone’s book “A Fresh Taste of Italy”
Spaghetti with Rubies
(Spagheti con Rubini)
2 bunches of beets (8 medium beets, about 2 pounds)
1/3 cup olive oil
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
Pinch of crushed red pepper, or to taste
Coars salt to taste
1 pound thin spaghetti or linguine (I have also used bucatini)
1. Preheat the oven to 400 F
2 Trim the tops and stems off the beets.(if tops are fresh blanch, chop and add to skillet with beets) Wash the beets under cool running water and scrub them with a brush. Wrap the beets in aluminum foil and bake for 45 minutes, or until tender. (pierce with a knife) Let cool, then peel and coarsely chop the beets (dice)
3. In a skillet large enough to hold all of the pasta, combine the olive oil garlic and red pepper. Cook over medium heat for about 30 seconds, or until the garlic is fragrant and the oil is sizzling. add the diced beets (and greens if using) and turn them in the oil mixture until heated through.
4. Bring a large pot of cold water to a boil. Add salt and the spaghetti. Cook until the spaghetti is almoxt al dente, tender yet firm to the bite. Drain the spaghetti, reserving 1/2 cup of the cooking water
5. Pour the spaghetti into the skillet with the beets. Add some of the cooking water. Simmer over medium heat, constantly turning the spaghetti with the beets, until the pasta is evenly colored about 2 minutes.
6. Serve immediately.
In the summer I always have fresh mint available. Chop a handful and add to the finished pasta. The subtle flavor of mint adds anothe layer of flavor to the dish. Enjoy!