Beetroot & Goat Cheese Ravioli

Level: Easy
Preptime: 1 hour

When I grocery shop, I am drawn in by the colourful variety of fruit and vegetables which means I buy a lot of things I don't really know what to do with, but they look pretty in my kitchen! This means that I am challenged at the end of the week, when my go-to recipes have been cooked and vegetables have been used, to concoct something unusual out of the remaining stragglers. In this case, I found a roll of fresh goat cheese, a bunch of mint and some beetroot, and got a little carried away. I like to think that these ravioli create a real sense of occasion in the mouth. Don't ask me to elaborate on that...! Also: I have a new favourite kitchen tool, the mandoline slicer. Nothing quite like perfectly even, thin sliced vegetables to the virgo in me.  Here we go:

Ingredients:

  • 2 large beetroots (iron, manganese, zinc, vitamin C)
  • 1 roll soft Goat cheese - refrigerated (calcium, protein, vitamin A, vitamin K) *Goat cheese is lower in cholesterol and more easily digested than cow's milk cheese   
  • 1 handful fresh mint leaves (potassium, magnesium, calcium, vitamin C, vitamin A)

For the dressing

  • 2 Tbs olive oil (healthy brain and heart)
  • 1 Tbs white wine vinegar (reduces glycemic index, reduces blood sugar)
  • 1 tsp wholegrain mustard (selenium, magnesium, anti-inflammatory)
  • 1/2 tsb honey (probiotic, anti-bacterial) 
  • 1/2 clove crushed garlic (Vitamin B6, vitamin C, reduces blood sugar)
 

A flavourful concoction packed with vitamin A, C and K, full of iron and calcium and low-fat all at once - for the fatigued among us.

Method:

Trim the stems and tails off the beetroot and place in a pot of water with quite a bit of salt, about 3 teaspoons. The water should be salty enough to flavour the beetroot while it cooks. Bring to the boil, then reduce heat and let cook for 35 minutes with the lid on until the beets are soft to the touch but still firm on the inside. You do not want to overcook the beetroot as it will crumble when sliced later. 

Drain the beetroot and set aside to cool.

Mix ingredients for the dressing together in a lidded jar, and shake furiously for about a minute until the mixture becomes creamy in consistency. If the honey clots, add a tsp of warm water and shake until no more lumps are visible.

Pour two Tbs of dressing onto a flat serving bowl, then take the back of the spoon to spread and roughly coat the plate.

Once cooled, take the beetroot and slice with the mandoline slicer. If you don't have a mandoline - most conventional graters have a similar longways slicer on the side, alternatively if you have mean knife skills, take a sharp kitchen knife to slice the beetroot into 2 mm-thick slices. Space out the rounds on the serving plate as the bottom layer to the ravioli. 

Take the refrigerated goat cheese and with a spoon place a dollop (approximately 1tsp) into the palm of your hand. Roll between two palms, then flatten between your fingers and place on a beetroot round. Close the ravioli with another layer of beetroot, and then so on. Carefully squeeze out the air between the beetroot flats and seal as best possible with your fingers.  

Finally, pour the remaining dressing evenly over the ravioli. Season with sea salt flakes and cracked black pepper. As a final touch, tear the mint leaves roughly and sprinkle over the plate. I would finish it off with a swirl of good olive oil for good measure, but if you think the dressing will suffice, then it's time to eaaaaat!