Autumn Rotini

September 19th 2013

I really like pasta salad, although it isn’t really salad is it?  Well either way today’s recipe is a simple plant based pasta that is as tasty as it is festive.  I still had a beet and a bunch of gorgeous chard from the bounty given to me by my friend Heidi, so I decided to make a healthy pasta that would reflect the color change that accompanies the season and also tastes great.  I used roasted garlic as a base for the sauce, and quickly cooked the chard with the pasta, I utilized some pantry staples and fancied it up with some organic micro greens, instead of the parsley I would normally use.  I think it turned out great, and the kids wanted seconds, so that is usually a good sign.
You will need:
1 lb. dried rotini pasta
1 medium beet
1 bunch of chard,
1 handful micro greens if you can’t find these substitute with your favorite fresh herb or even shredded lettuce
1 can of chickpeas drained, rinsed and dried well
1 tsp. smoked paprika
1 head garlic, sounds like a lot but it totally mellows when roasted
2 tbsp. Olive oil
Splash of balsamic
Salt and pepper
Pre-heat your oven to 375, wrap your beet in foil, place in oven.  Chop the top off of your garlic then wrap in foil and set it next to your friend Mr. Beet.  On a sheet pan place chickpeas, paprika and a pinch of salt, toss them together till the chickpeas are coated with spice, place in oven.  Chickpeas will be done after about 30 minutes, they should have a crispy outside and soft inside, check them after 20 minutes to get desired doneness.  Garlic should take about 45 minutes, set aside.  After about an hour your beet should be done.  When they have cooled enough to handle squeeze garlic out of its shell, and dice beet.
Cook rotini in salted, boiling water, for 5 minutes, then add chard, cook another 5 or so minutes, drain.  In a large bowl place roasted garlic, oil, balsamic and a pinch of salt and pepper, mix.  Add hot pasta and chard, stir well, add chickpeas and micro greens.  Serve!  Great hot or cold.