Another one of those recipe titles that I rewrote 11 times, trying to make it short enough so that you don’t need to take three breaths just to say it.
You see, this is a winter pasta made of turnip noodles and a tomato-fennel sauce. But, it’s also got roasted petit green beans. Altogether, that’s a Winter Tomato-Fennel Turnip Noodle Pasta (with Roasted Petit Green Beans, of course).
A turnip is a root vegetable. Now that it’s winter, they’re much bigger and therefore, much easier to spiralize. I’ve been spiralizing them and tasting them, but hadn’t exactly found the perfect sauce to counteract their bitterness just yet. Until now, of course.
Readers, meet my simple tomato-fennel sauce. Tomato-fennel sauce, meet my readers. Fennel really enhance the flavors of the tomatoes here and makes up for the lack of fresh summertime tomatoes. Hence, a winter pasta.
Truth be told, I’ve never liked fennel. I’ve tried, I really have. I’ve just always found it too, well, much. The fennel would overtake the whole dish.
This is very curious, because my favorite alcoholic drink is sambuca, which has that licorice smell that fennel does. People usually look at me funny when I order sambuca after dinner!
But, with this pasta, I’m loving fennel!
Anyway, this pasta is packed with nutrients, veggies and flavor. Turnips complement the strong fennel taste perfectly.
Let’s not forget the roasted green beans- they cute, they’re light, they’re flavorful and they’re green! They’re not in peak season during the winter, but roasting them gives them that warmness and fragrance indicative of wintertime.
Okay, I’ll stop bragging about this recipe. But first, let’s go through how to prepare your fennel.
First, slice off the celery-like stems of the fennel, separating the bulb from the stalks.
Second, cut off about 1/2 inch to an inch of the bottom of the bulb.
Third, slice the bulb in half.
Fourth, cut vertically into “slices”.
Now that you have your slices, dice them! But what about the leftovers? First off, save the greens from the stalks to use as the garnish or save in the refrigerator to use later as fresh herbs.
What about the stalks? Dice those too and save for later to use in a soup. The stalks can be used just like celery.
Now, let’s get to that recipe!
Have you tried turnips yet?
Winter Tomato-Fennel Turnip Noodles with Roasted Petit Green Beans
- 1 cup petit french green beans ends trimmed off
- olive oil to drizzle
- salt and pepper to taste
- 3 garlic cloves minced
- 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
- 1 cup diced white onion
- 1 fennel bulb diced
- 2 14oz cans diced tomatoes
- 2 tsp dried oregano flakes
- 1/2 cup vegetable broth low-sodium
- 3 large turnips Blade C
- 1 tbsp fennel herbs
- 2 tbsp grated pecorino romano cheese optional, to garnish
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Place the green beans in a baking tray and drizzle with olive oil. Season with salt and pepper and roast for 15-20 minutes, tossing halfway through. When done, set aside.
- Place the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat and then add in the garlic and red pepper flakes. Cook for 30 seconds and add in the onion and fennel. Cook for about 4 minutes and then add in the tomatoes. Season with oregano and let simmer until liquid is mostly reduced.
- Once reduced, add the sauce-fennel mixture into a food processor and pulse until pureed.
- Add the mixture back into the skillet and add in the vegetable broth. Stir to combine and then add in the turnip noodles.
- Cover the skillet and cook for 5-7 minutes, uncovering and stirring occasionally, until turnip noodles are cooked fully. When done, plate into bowls and top with cooked green beans. Garnish with fennel herbs and optional cheese. Enjoy!