Tagliatelle al grano saraceno con barbabietole e pesto con foglie di barbabietole

Don’t throw away the green leaves of the root vegetables, they’re completely eatable and delicious. Beets are a zero waste vegetable. You can prepare the beet leaves like any other greens. Saute it, raw in salads, pesto, soups, etc…

The pasta is a mixture of buckwheat flour and wholewheat flour. Buckwheat has no gluten so you need to mix it with some other flour in order to make a pasta that will not break. I have always disliked broken tagliatelle. When I was a child, I would refuse to eat spaghetti or any type of long pasta if it was broken, and up to these days, I really don’t like broken pasta. It’s very important that the pasta keeps its original shape. You can play around with the flours ratio like 2/3 buckwheat 1/3 wholewheat, brown rice flour, etc…but the more flour with gluten you use, the better the texture. I used brown rice flour in this recipe to try out the texture. Also, you can add parmesan in the pesto, I did not add any cheese this time, I wanted to keep it more simple.

Ingredients for 3-4

for the pasta

  • 200 g buckwheat pasta
  • 100 g brown rice flour (or wholewheat flour)
  • 2 eggs

For the pesto

  • 2 bunches of beet leaves
  • juice of one lemon juice
  • 2 tbs toasted walnuts
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 3 tbs parmesan (optional)

For the beets

  • 1/2 lb golden baby beets, peeled and quartered
  • olive oil
  • balsamic vinegar
  • salt and pepper


For the pasta

Mix both flours in a large container. Add eggs and mix well to obtain an homogeneous texture. Knead dough until soft and smooth, make a round ball with dough and let it rest for 30 min under a cloth. Using a long rolling pin, start rolling the dough until thin (1mm). Let it rest a few minutes. Add extra flour if needed, and fold dough bringing two sides toward center. Cut into strips about 3/4 cm thick. Let it rest for about 20 minutes.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add pasta, stir carefully and make sure not to break pasta. When the pasta comes at the surface (a few minutes later), drain pasta. Add beets and a few tbs of pesto. Mix well and serve hot.

For the pesto

Mix all ingredients together in a mixer to form a paste. Adjust with oil if too thick

For the beets

Place beets on a tray. Add salt, pepper, oil and vinegar and coat the beets. Roast in a pre heated oven at 390F until tender.