l love beet noodles because of their gorgeous purple color. The beet taste in these is very subtle so that even people who strongly dislike beets will eat them. I’m always a bit disappointed that they don’t have this intense earthiness that is the trademark of fresh beets.
I only use the beet juice instead of a beet puree for these noodles. I know that a puree would give me a stronger beet taste but it ruins the texture of the noodles. They won’t get bouncy and chewy if you use a vegetable puree.
If you want an intense beet taste it’s much better to make a batch of beet spaetzle which can be made from a beet puree. The method for making beet spaetzle is the same as for making wild garlic spaetzle.
I win the beet juice by blending the beets together with water. Then I wrap the puree in cheesecloth and squeeze out the clear juice. You could also substitute the water with eggs if you would like to make egg noodles.
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How to serve beet noodles
These beet noodles are very versatile because of their mild taste. They pair perfectly with almost anything. I’ve given you a serving suggestion in the recipe instructions. I like to eat them drenched in herb butter and lemon juice. But this is really just a suggestion. They can be eaten with almost any pasta sauce or as a side dish for goulash or pan-fried fish.
I’ve already given you detailed instructions on how to prepare ribbon noodles on my blog. If you’re new to noodle making, you can check it out. I always use my pasta machine to make noodles because it is so fast and easy to work with. However, the dough can, of course, be rolled out by hand as well.
It’s best to eat these noodles fresh. But you can also prepare a large batch and dry or freeze these noodles to have them in your pantry whenever you feel like eating beet noodles.
9 ounces (250 g | about 2-3) red beets, peeled and cubed
1/2 cup water
9 ounces (250 g) semolina flour
9 ounces (250 g) all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
5 tablespoons butter
3 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed lightly with the flat of a knife or the heel of your hand
1 tablespoon finely minced fresh rosemary sprigs
1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
1 tablespoon lemon juice, more or less to taste
Prepare the noodle dough:
In a blender, combine the red beets and water. Blitz until you have a smooth beet puree. Wrap the puree in a piece of cheesecloth and squeeze out all the beet juice. You should have about 9 ounces (250 g) of beet juice. If not, simply add some more water or discard excess juice.
In a mixing bowl, combine the semolina flour, all-purpose flour, salt, and beet juice. Knead until a smooth dough forms. Then cover in plastic wrap and leave the dough to rest for at least 30 minutes at room temperature.
Roll out and cut the noodle dough:
Divide the dough in half or quarters and work in two to four batches when rolling out the dough.
I like to use a pasta machine to roll out the dough. Dust your rested noodle dough with all-purpose flour and roll it out thinly with a rolling pin until it is thin enough to fit through the widest setting of your pasta machine. Pass through the pasta machine, then fold the dough over itself from both sides lengthwise and pass through the pasta machine on the widest setting again. Repeat about 5 times before you start to roll out the dough thinner.
After the folding phase, you can start to decrease the width off your pasta machine. Pass the dough through the machine without folding it afterward until it is thin enough to your liking. Always consider that it will swell a little and thus get thicker when cooked.
If you don’t own a pasta machine, you can alternatively roll out the dough by hand with a rolling pin.
Dust your dough sheets generously with flour before cutting them. Trim the dough sheets to the desired length of your noodles and roll them up. Cut out individual noodles with your desired width. Dust generously with flour so they won’t stick.
Cook the noodles:
Cook the fresh beet noodles for 30 seconds to 1 minute in boiling salted water until al dente. Shock them in ice water and drain. Reserve some of the pasta water.
Heat the butter in a large saute pan over medium-high heat. Add the garlic cloves, rosemary, and thyme. Fry the aromatics in butter until it starts to turn lightly golden brown. Take the pan off the heat and squeeze in the lemon juice. Be careful as the butter will sizzle violently and might splash a little.
Add your noodles to the pan and add about 1/4 cup of the reserved pasta water, just enough so that the noodles are covered with a creamy layer of sauce. Mix until well combined and serve immediately.