Beetroot Risotto

Risotto is one of those dishes which are easy to prepare. There are many varities and you will find that most italian provinces lay claim to having the best tasting, most genuine version of the dish. In this recipe, I am preparing risotto with fresh beetroot. I liked to use raw beetroot when I make dish, for it gives an uniquely earthy taste.

This dish is very simple to prepare, either pureed in a food processor or simply grated, the beetroot cooks at the same time as the risotto. The addition of a little dried chilli flakes adds a little spice.

Beetroot Risotto, served with Rocket and Parmesan
Beetroot Risotto, alternative serving idea with Parmesan Wafers

Portions: 4 Portions

Preparation: 15 minutes

Cooking: 25 minutes

Ingredients

Ingredients

  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 100g butter
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • 1/2 tsp dried chilli flakes (optional)
  • 350-400g beetroot, peeled, roughly chopped and pureed in food processor or grate
  • 320g risotto rice (arborio or carnaroli)
  • 175ml dry white wine
  • 1 litre of chicken or vegetable stock
  • 100g parmesan, freshly grated
  • 80g feta, broken up into pieces around .5-1cm (optional)
  • Maldon salt or similar flaked salt
  • freshly ground black pepper

To Serve

  • Extra-virgin olive oil
  • couple of handfuls of rocket
  • grated parmesan

Method

Risotto

  1. Place the stock in a saucepan over a high heat and bring to the boil, then lower to a steady simmer.
  2. Melt 50g of the butter with the remaining oil in a heavy based saucepan over a moderate heat. Sauté the onion in the pan until soft and transparent 4-5 minutes.
  3. Stir the garlic, dried chilli (optional), beetroot and rice and cook for 2-3 minutes coating the rice with the butter.
  4. Pour in the wine and stir until the wine has evaporated.
  5. Add 2-3 ladlefuls of the stock to the rice and slowly stir until absorbed. Repeat this adding stock by the ladleful, slowly stirring and making sure the stock is absorbed before adding more. Continue this until you have used all the stock or the risotto is 'al dente' (soft but with bite).
  6. Remove from the heat and stir in the remaining butter and parmesan so that the risotto is creamy. Stir in the broken up pieces of feta so well distributed (optional). Season to taste, cover and leave for a couple of minutes before serving.

To Serve

  1. Spoon into bowls, place rocket in the centre of each serving and drizzle over a little olive oil. Accompany with freshly grated parmesan.