Red Beet Ravioli

This recipe is based on the Red Beet Ravioli recipe in Raw Food Real World, though I have altered it a bit, as I usually do, to match my own taste buds. It may sound a bit complicated, but aside from the soaking, it only took me about 30-40 minutes to make and assemble a lovely, delicious, and beautifully presented gourmet dinner for my friends.

For the filling:

3 cups cashew nuts, soaked 1.5-2 hours
1/4 cup lemon juice
1 tablespoon grated lemon zest
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
2 teaspoons salt
3 green onions, white part and 1 inch of green part, minced
4 Tbsp minced tarragon
3 Tbsp minced parsley

In a food processor, blend the nuts, lemon juice and zest, yeast, and salt until smooth. Transfer the filling to a medium bowl and fold in the onions, tarragon, and parsley. Taste for seasoning and add more salt or lemon juice, if needed. The filling should have the consistency of ricotta cheese. Store it covered in the refrigerator if not using right away; it tastes best if you bring it back to room temperature before assembling and serving.

For the pepper puree:

2 yellow bell peppers, cored and cleaned
1 Tbsp lemon juice
2 green onions, white part only
1/2 tsp salt
1 Tbsp cold-pressed olive oil
1/2 cup pine nuts, soaked 30 minutes to 1 hour
1 pinch ground or fresh turmeric

In a Vita-Mix or high-speed blender, blend all the ingredients until smooth. If the sauce is too liquid, add an additional 1 to 2 tablespoons of soaked pine nuts. Place in a squeeze bottle or other cover container and refrigerate if not using right away.

For the assembly:

1 large bunch red beets (2 inches diameter or more)
2 to 3 Tbsp macadamia oil, other nut oil, or extra-virgin olive oil
1 to 2 Tbsp lemon juice
Coarse sea salt
1 handful chopped pistachios
1 tsp pistachio, other nut oil, or extra-virgin olive oil
1 small handful fresh tarragon leaves, torn or left whole
Freshly ground black pepper
Pea shoots for garnish

Step 1
Using a mandolin, slice the beets very thin (about 1/16 inch or less). Make stacks and cut into 2-inch squares. The size doesn’t matter much, as long as they are all roughly the same. You should have at least fifty slices. In a medium bowl, add the beet slices, macadamia oil, lemon juice, and a generous pinch of sea salt. Toss to coat: there should be enough oil and lemon juice to coat all of the slices, but not so much that they are dripping liquid.

Step 2
Arrange half the beet slices flat on serving plates. Place a generous dollop of the filling on each slice. Sauce the plates with the pepper puree, using either a squeeze bottle or just spooning it over the beets and filling (this way some of the sauce will be inside each ravioli). Top each ravioli with a beet slice, pressing down gently.

Step 3
In a small bowl, toss the chopped pistachios with the oil and a pinch of sea salt. Sprinkle each ravioli with the pistachios and top with the tarragon. Grind a bit of black pepper over the plates and garnish with pea shoots.
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