29.06.2017
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06.05.2017

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One of my most beloved combos returns in pasta salad form. ‘Cause pasta salads rock, so why not put some roast beetroot and feta in them? Then smother them in a Greek yogurt, cumin and vinegar dressing. Then eat them for a week.

Ok, maybe you don’t all fancy eating the same pasta salad for a whole week. Although I don’t see why not, it just gets better and better as it sits. The only problem is not eating it all in one go.

As you know by now, I love me my beet and feta combo. I’ve started quite a collection of recipes featuring the two. Can anyone blame me? It’s a match made in heaven.

Roast Beetroot and Feta Pasta Salad with Greek Yoghurt and Cumin Dressing www.thefoodiecorner.gr Photo description: At the top right of the photo a beige plate with pieces of roasted beetroot and chunks of feta cheese. A spoon is lying on the plate with some dressing on it. To the bottom left of the photo, half visible, a plate of pasta tossed in dressing.

So it was a no brainer to use the combo in a pasta salad, when I was asked to come up with a recipe using whole wheat fusilli for the Greek blog. It turns out they complement each other really well! The dressing just adds a cherry on top (not a real one, that might be too weird even for me) as cumin is another great addition to these flavours. The Greek yoghurt makes everything creamy, and the vinegar is best man at the beet and feta wedding so I couldn’t leave it out.

Roast Beetroot and Feta Pasta Salad with Greek Yoghurt and Cumin Dressing www.thefoodiecorner.gr Photo description: Roasted beetroot on a beige plate, on a light coloured surface. Most beetroot are whole, with some of them cut in half. They are arranged with their «tails» facing the top side of the photo.

It’s super easy, it keeps wonderfully well, and it’s brilliant for barbeques or picnics or a side dish to say chicken or salmon, or just on its own. I have a feeling you could also mix in some rocket (arugula) or baby spinach with excellent results.

Roast Beetroot and Feta Pasta Salad with Greek Yoghurt and Cumin Dressing www.thefoodiecorner.gr Photo description: The plate of pasta salad, with fusilli shaped pasta and chunks of beetroot and crumbled feta. The plate is sitting on a wheather beaten wooden surface. To the right of the photo a beige linen napkin just visible.

So go make yourself a big batch and let me know what you think. And I’d also love to hear what your favourite pasta salad is. I plan to make a lot of them this summer.

Ingredients

1 kg beetroot (without leaves)

500gr whole wheat pasta

olive oil to drizzle on beets and pasta

salt for pasta water

300gr feta cheese

For the dressing

90ml (6 Tbs) olive oil

60ml (4 Tbs) balsamic

60ml (4 Tbs) cider vinegar

30ml (2 Tbs) wholegrain mustard

1 Tbs + 1 tsp thyme, dried

2 tsp cumin powder

1 1/2 tsp salt

1 tsp black pepper, freshly cracked

120gr (8 Tbs) Greek yoghurt (I used 2% fat)

Step 1

Preheat oven to 180C fan assisted (or 200C conventional). There are two options for roasting the beetroot.

a) Cut any stalks off close to the root, wash well and put in a baking tin (there should be space between them). Drizzle with olive oil, cover tightly with foil, and roast till soft enough for a sharp knife to glide in easily, about 1 to 1 ½ hours depending on size. Let cool slightly and peel skins of easily with your fingers or a knife.

b) Peel beetroot, cut into chunks, put in a baking tin (fitting comfortably) and drizzle with olive oil. Cover with foil and roast for about 45 minutes till soft enough for a knife to glide in easily.

Step 2

Boil pasta according to directions for an al dente texture. Drain, drizzle in olive oil and set aside to cool.

Step 3

In a large bowl whisk the oil for the dressing, the vinegars, mustard, thyme, cumin, salt and pepper. Then whisk in the yoghurt.

Step 4

When everything is at room temperature mix the pasta into the dressing, add the beetroot and crumble the feta over the top.

Notes:
Please find the time to roast the beetroot. There is no comparison in taste and texture.

If you mix the pasta into the dressing while hot, it will absorb a lot of it. That is fine if you want to eat it warm, straight away. If you prefer it cold (I suggest room temp not fridge temp), then wait for everything to cool before mixing. After that you could also add half the dressing, let the flavours mingle for a few more hours, then add the rest just before serving.

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