There’s a lot wrong with Valentine’s Day. It doesn’t take a serious heartbreak to see through the thinly veiled marketing ploys or pushy PR blast to see it for the Hallmark holiday that it is. Terminally single, I’ve railed against it, mocked it, and ignored it throughout the years, depending on my level of cynicism.
This time around, however, I’ve found a new perspective. Don’t worry, I’m no less of a pessimist, but there’s more than one way to go about this concept. Ultimately, Valentine’s Day should be a celebration of love, and I’m all for that. Love can take many forms, beyond classic romantic love. There’s platonic love for your friends, familial love for your parents; love is love. No one love is lesser than any others, and yes, you can absolutely celebrate self love, too.
Pasta is my love language. It sounds mundane, and for the most part, it is. Dried pasta is a cheap, ubiquitous, reliable staple that’s always on hand for a last-minute meal, haphazardly thrown together at the end of a long day. Homemade pasta, however, is a different story. It’s every bit as affordable, takes only a few extra minutes of labor, and a little more advance planning, but those tiny extra steps pay off in huge dividends. Exactly BECAUSE dried pasta is so easy and accessible, anyone that cares enough to start from scratch clearly cares. It’s a small gesture that says, “I want you to have the best. I want you to enjoy something that I enjoy. I want to make this exactly to your tastes.”
If that isn’t love, I don’t know what is. Even if the noodles are too thick or misshapen, these pretty pink strands could melt the iciest hearts with one bite. Roasted heart-shaped beets make the affection poured into this dish obvious, because life is too short for secret admirers. Don’t cover it up with heavy sauce, either; a touch of olive oil, a few dollops of dairy-free ricotta, garlic, basil, and lemon zest is enough.
There’s no wrong way to express your love. Let’s take back Valentine’s Day and celebrate what’s really important. Love is care, love is kindness, and sometimes, love is pasta.
- 250 Grams All-Purpose Flour
- 90 Grams Beet Juice
- 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
- 2 Cloves Garlic, Minced
- 1/2 Fresh Lemon, Zested and Juiced
- 1/4 Cup Fresh Basil, Minced
- 2 Scallions, Thinly Sliced
- Salt and Ground Black Pepper, to Taste
- 2 Medium Beets, Roasted, Peeled, and Thinly Sliced (Optionally Cut into Hearts)
- 1/2 Cup Vegan Ricotta
- To make the pasta, place the flour in your pasta maker with the linguine extrusion disc installed. Slowly drizzle in the beet juice and process according to the manufacturer's instructions.
- Gently toss the freshly extruded pasta with additional flour to prevent them from sticking or clumping together. Let stand in a cool, dry place for at least 1 hour for best results.
- When you're ready to cook the dish, bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add the noodles and cook for only 1 - 3 minutes, until the noodles begin to float. Quickly drain and immediately rinse with cold water to stop the cooking process.
- Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a saute pan over medium heat. Add the garlic and cook until lightly golden brown; 3 - 5 minutes. Add in the lemon juice and remove from the heat.
- Pour the mixture over the pasta and toss with the basil, scallions, salt, and pepper. Gently fold in the beets and divide between two plates. Top each with dollops of vegan ricotta, and finish with a light sprinkle of lemon zest. Enjoy hot, with lots of love!
If you don't want to make your own pasta from scratch, you can use 8 ounces of dried linguine instead. You can lightly tint them pink by mixing beet juice into the cooking water, but the color won't be as bold as noodles made with the juice mixed in.
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 519Total Fat: 13gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 9gCholesterol: 13mgSodium: 336mgCarbohydrates: 85gFiber: 4gSugar: 15gProtein: 15g
All nutritional information presented within this site are intended for informational purposes only. I am not a certified nutritionist and any nutritional information on BitterSweetBlog.com should only be used as a general guideline. This information is provided as a courtesy and there is no guarantee that the information will be completely accurate. Even though I try to provide accurate nutritional information to the best of my ability, these figures should still be considered estimations.