Today we’re sharing a pasta recipe with a mission — to help reduce hunger. With a little help from you and Dreamfields Pasta, this Roasted Beet Hummus Over Pasta, can make an impact in fighting hunger for some of the 49 million Americans who are identified as “food insecure” which intensifies during the summer months.
I grew up in a small, rural Missouri town where I saw first-hand how financial burdens quickly translates into poor or limited food choices. Today I live in a suburban community in the Kansas City metro area, but I’m convinced that no matter where you live, hunger can impact people everywhere. When my daughter was little I used to volunteer at her school and was surprised to learn how many kids participated in free or reduced lunches.
Whereas a lot of kids enjoy their summer by heading to the pool, we knew of some kids who would go to local churches or community programs during the summer months so they could have something for lunch. It’s why local community programs struggle during this timeframe, because there’s so much more demand in the summer. Learn more about summer hunger and ways to provide relief/assistance.
Help Fight Hunger
We love food around here. I’m sure you do too! To help those who are facing hunger, especially during these summer months, there’s a lot you can do to make a difference. You can donate food to your local food bank or social/community services program. I think contributing to local programs can make such a big difference. Our local grocery stores collect donations year-round. So step number one is to see which grocery stores in your area are collecting donations and consider giving regularly.
I was so glad to be asked to participate in this Dreamfields Pastapalooza to provide you yet another way to help fight hunger. All summer long, Dreamfields is offering bloggers the opportunity to create pasta recipes using specific ingredients. I was selected to participate in the Gourmet Basket Challenge.
Small-town Missouri girl goes gourmet! I like the sound of that!
Here’s where you come in. From July 2 – July 8, you get to vote for your favorite recipe [Hand in the air squealing PICK MINE!]. A winner will be selected from each challenge and they’ll receive a $1,000 donation to their local food bank/pantry. The other contestants will receive a $200 donation. My donation will go to Lee’s Summit Social Services, a non-profit support and food service that serves needy folks and families in my city and is part of the United Way Network.
Another exciting bonus is that by voting, you get a chance to win a Dreamfields family pack and a $1,000 donation provided in your name to the food bank/pantry of your choice. That means, all-in-all Dreamfields will be providing 30 donations amounting to over $10,000 to local communities, all to help families who are experiencing food insecurities.
You can vote for the Gourmet Basket Challenge beginning tomorrow July 2 and ending July 8 at 11:50 pm. Please go vote for the Dreamfields Pastapalooza!
My Gourmet Basket Challenge
Everyone who participated in the Gourmet Basket Challenge had to create a recipe using the following ingredients: flavored wine/vinegar, almonds, root vegetables, protein, and dried fruit. We also could add two other ingredients. Dreamfields pasta, water, oil, salt, and pepper were considered “freebies”. I mulled that list over for quite a bit before landing on this Roasted Beet Hummus Over Pasta. It’s light, doesn’t require firing up the hot oven, and is mighty colorful too!
I used Dreamfields Penne as the base and then combined beets, red wine, almonds, garlic, basil and chickpeas in a food processor to create a delicious pesto-inspired hummus. A few sliced dried figs on the top created a perfect finishing (and gourmet) touch!
Another thing I love about this recipe is most everything is easy to find at your local grocery store or farmer’s market. Having accessible ingredients can be the first step to making more dishes at home.
Look at the color of that Roasted Beet Hummus! If you don’t have any fresh basil, you can skip that part, but it does add a nice pop of flavor!
Make sure to vote for my Roasted Beet Hummus Over Pasta and give my food bank (and yours) a chance to receive a $1,000 contribution from Dreamfields Pasta! You can also share about this campaign using #pastapalooza on Instagram or Twitter. What’s your favorite food bank? Leave a comment below and let’s start a discussion about how to solve hunger!
- 1 medium beet, peeled and chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
- ¼ cup red wine
- ¼ cup raw almonds (not roasted)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 15 oz can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
- ¼ cup fresh basil leaves (2 teaspoons dried)
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- 13.25 oz box of Dreamfields Penne Rigate Pasta, cooked according to package directions
- ¼ cup dried figs, chopped
- Additional basil leaves for presentation
- Spray a light coating of vegetable cooking spray on a skillet. Place over medium heat. Add the chopped beets. Cook until the beets are tender, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook another 5 minutes.
- In the meantime, add the wine and almonds to the bowl of a food processor. Pulse and then push ingredients down with a spatula. Pulse again, this time for up to a minute, to allow the almonds and wine to turn into a paste.
- Once the beets are fork tender, add the hot beets and garlic to the food processor bowl. Pulse for up to 30 seconds to combine. Leave the lid on the bowl while you begin preparing the pasta.
- Once the beets have cooled a bit, add the chickpeas to the beet mixture in the food processor and pulse again until smooth, up to a minute, stopping to push down ingredients with a spatula as needed. Add the chopped basil and salt. This makes a thick hummus, but you can add water by the tablespoon to thin it out to your liking.
- Serve the hummus over plated pasta with chopped figs, and basil leaves. You can also top with a drizzle of olive oil.