Caramelized Shallot Polenta, Crisped Beets, & Kale Pistachio Pesto

Beets are one of my favorite vegetables.  Beets have a insanely high nutritional value, and not only do they help with mental health, sexual health, & general health, they are also very high in many vitamins and minerals.  They contain potassium, magnesium, fiber, phosphorus, iron, vitamins A, B, & C; beta-carotene, beta-cyanine, and folic acid.  They also help to cleanse the body, and help to purify your blood and liver.  If you are eating a lot of beets or beet juice, and your pee turns pink, guess what? You have low stomach acid. Pee still clear? You’ll need to start juicing using greens as well to balance out your stomach acid levels. Nutritionists use beets and beet juice to test stomach acid levels, and you can do so yourself at home too, simply by adding beets to your diet!  They also are low in calories & high in natural sugar, but the sugar is released into your body gradually throughout the day (unlike how candy, sugar, or chocolate would).  This means that drinking beet juice in the morning, or having beets earlier in your day will give you a boat load of energy!  Plus they just taste amazing, and are like sweet jewels.  Now that the fall weather has kind of started to kick in, roasting vegetables is one of my go to cooking methods.  And if you’ve never had a roasted beet, well you are in for a treat!

beet polenta-1beet polenta-1-2beet polenta-1-3

I used a mixture of red and golden beets for this recipe, mainly because they both looked too good at the farmers market and I couldn’t pick just one!  But you can use any combination of beets that you’d like.  Preheat your oven to 350 degrees fahrenheit, and then scrub your beets.  Unfortunately, being a root vegetable comes with a lot of dirt, so you really want to scrub these guys super clean so you don’t eat any debris.  You can also peel them if you find that easier.  Thinly slice your beets on a mandolin or with a sharp knife if you’re comfortable.  Toss them in a bit of olive oil, pink himalayan salt, and black pepper.  Arrange them on a parchment paper lined baking sheet, in single layered rows, like how you would baking cookies.  Bake them for about 15-20 minutes, flipping them over half way through!  These guys are so simple to whip up, and are the sweetest and most satisfying treat to this meal.

beet polenta-1-4beet polenta-1-6

For your pesto,  you’ll need some pistachios, green kale, brazil nut parmesan cheese, extra virgin olive oil, pink himalayan salt, black pepper, garlic cloves, lemon juice, and fresh basil.  Add all of your ingredients into a food processor (minus the olive oil), and pulse until combined into a paste.  Then slowly add in your olive oil while the food processor is running to emulsify the pesto together into a paste.  Add more oil, or less, to make it as thick or runny as you’d like.  Refrigerate for about 20 minutes minimum, just to chill it.

beet polenta-1-5

For the polenta,  start out by prepping your shallots and garlic.  You’ll need about 3-4 shallots, and 3 garlic cloves.  Don’t finely dice your shallots, cut them as if you were making onion rings.  Mince your garlic, and then add the shallot and garlic into a pot with some olive oil and vegan butter.  Season with pink himalayan salt and black pepper to taste, and heat over a low heat for about 15 minutes, so that the shallots can caramelize.  Then add in your regular unsweetened almond milk.  Stir to combine, and bring to a boil.  Then add in your polenta, reduce the heat to a simmer, and stir continuously.  The polenta will start to thicken very quickly, so keep stirring to prevent it from clumping together.  When its reached your desired thickness, add some vegan butter and brazil nut parmesan cheese, and stir to combine.  Top your polenta with some of your pesto, and crisped beets, and you’re ready to dig in!  We really hope you guys enjoy this indulgent, fall recipe.

beet polenta-1-7


INGREDIENTS

  • 2 red beets & 2 golden beets
  • 2 cups polenta (corn grits)
  • 6 cups regular unsweetened almond milk
  • 4 large shallots
  • 5 garlic cloves
  • 1/4 cup pistachios
  • 1 cup green kale
  • 1 cup fresh basil
  • 1/4 cup olive oil + 2 tbs + 4 tbs
  • 1/2 cup brazil nut parmesan cheese
  • 4 tbs vegan butter
  • 1 tbs pink himalayan salt + 1/2 tsp + 1 tsp
  • 1 tbs black pepper + 1 tsp + 1 tsp
  • Juice of 1/2 a lemon

DIRECTIONS

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees fahrenheit
  2. Scrub your beets (or peel them), and slice thinly on a mandolin.  Toss with 4 tbs olive oil, 1 tsp black pepper, and 1 tsp himalayan salt.  Arrange in a single layer (like cookies) on a parchment lined baking sheet, and bake for 15-20 minutes, flipping half way through.
  3. For the pesto, combine the kale, basil, pistachios, 2 garlic cloves, 1/4 cup brazil nut parmesan, lemon juice, 1 tsp black pepper, and 1/2 tsp himalayan salt into a food processor and pulse until combined.  Slowly add in your 1/4 cup olive oil while the processor is running, until a thick paste comes together.  Add less / more oil to your liking.
  4. Slice your shallots like you would onion rings, then mince your garlic.  Add to a pot with 2 tbs of your vegan butter, and some salt & pepper.  Cook over low heat for about 15 minutes, until the shallots have caramelized.  Then add in your almond milk, bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer and add in your polenta.  Continuously stir until the polenta reaches your desired thickness, so it doesn’t clump together.  Add the other 2 tbs of vegan butter, and rest of your parmesan cheese into the polenta and stir to combine.
  5. Top the polenta with your pesto, and crisped beets, and serve!

Leave a Reply