I love good food, and moreover, I appreciate good ingredients. I think cooking takes your relationship with food to another level. We normally eat out twice a week, and we order take away about three times a week. But lately, I have been cooking at home more, and I promise it has nothing to do with me recently watching “Earthlings.” I think I just want the best for my family so most food we eat are made at home. I’m kind of good at it anyway… I think. We still enjoy street food time to time, and we go to restaurant once a week, but no more takeout.
I enjoy cooking more because we make better choice selecting the ingredients. Sadik and I have been talking— we should be living consciously and comprehending the choices we made. Bye-bye frozen meat, now we went to the local market to get free-range chicken. We also buy high quality produce in lesser quantity. I hate to waste stuff, and I want my family to respect food.
Beetroot is a beautiful vegetable. It’s red and nutritious. When I see it in the market, I am immediately drawn to it. The problem is— my boys don’t like it. Sadik can eat it, but he doesn’t seem to like it. Yaseen has no love for this crimson beauty. They don’t fancy it the way I do. I want to buy beetroot because I know it’s good for my family. So I bought it anyway despite the boys rolling their eyes.
I am determined to make these boys eat my beetroot. So when they left home today, my operation started in secret.
I boil beetroot until they are soft so I can puree them into a creamy paste. In a bowl of flour, I add salt, eggs and oil. All the dark red paste was added in there, too. I knead the dough, and it was kind of fun. So fun— my hand was pink, and I made a big mess all over the kitchen counter while listening to some country music. On another burner, I had vegetables simmered in aromatic, thick coconut cream. The dough was ready so I am going to rest it for hours, waiting for Yaseen to come home so I can make some red flatbread for him.
Meanwhile, I almost forgot that it’s lunch, and I really need a big bowl of food. So I steal a bit of the dough and roll it out, making even more mess in the kitchen. I cut the dough into noodle. And ta-dah, lunch is served!
2 medium-sized beetroots
2 ½ cups flour
½ tsp salt
2 large eggs
2 tsp vegetable oil
More flour for dusting
Boil whole beetroots in the pot until soft. Remove them from the pot and let them cool enough to touch. Remove the skin from the beetroots and roughly chop them.
Puree the beetroots in food processer until smooth. Don’t worry if there are some grains and tiny bits in the paste.
In a large bowl, combine flour, salt, eggs, oil and beetroot paste. Knead for 15 minutes until the dough is smooth and pliable, add more flour if the dough is too sticky. Cover and rest the dough for at least 1 hour.
Dust your working surface. Take a handful of dough and roll it into thin sheet. Sprinkle more flour on top and cut it into small strips. Dust your beetroot noodle with more flour to prevent the noodle from sticking together.
To cook beetroot noodle, boil large pot of water with a little salt. The water should boil furiously. Shake the excess flour off the noodle and add the noodle into the boiling water. Gently stir and let it cook for 30 seconds to 1 minute (depends on how thick your noodle is). When the noodle is cooked, it will rise to the top. Check by eating some of it; the noodle should be soft and cooked through. Remove the noodle from hot water and serve immediately with curry or broth. If not serve immediately, shock the in cold water, rinse well, and toss in some oil.