Boozy beetroot risotto

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It’s not actually that boozy, I mean, after it’s been cooked there is barely any alcohol in it. It’s just that I love adding wine to food, especially to Italian dishes like pasta sauces or risotto. It’s always a more valid excuse to open a bottle than just for the sake of drinking it, right?

So, beetroot risotto.

It all started when Tomek bought us tons of beetroots to take pictures of for the blog.

I don’t mind beetroot but it’s not in my top 10 and I almost never cook with it so it kinda just stayed in the cupboard, sad and forgotten, until one day Tomek looked at it and offered to make a beetroot soup. Honestly, I couldn’t think of anything worse than beetroot soup so I kindly stopped his enthusiasm and started looking for other beetroot inspiration. My best finding was an open bag of Arborio rice and here is how it begun, beetroot risotto!

Ironically, I am not a massive fan either of beetroot or risotto but this dish is exactly what you need on a cold winter day!

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Ingredients (serves 4):

  • 250g risotto rice
  • 4 large or 5 small beetroots
  • 2 handfuls of fresh spinach
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 large or 2 small red onion, chopped
  • 200ml white wine (it is possible to use water instead but it won’t taste quite the same)
  • 4 garlic gloves, finely chopped
  • 500 ml vegetable stock or 1 vegetable stock cube
  • around 10 rosemary leaves, finely chopped (it is possible to use dried rosemary)

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees. Peel the beetroots, cut them in halves and wrap in aluminium foil. Roast them for about an hour, until soft. (Alternatively, if you’re under time pressure, you can boil the beetroots in vegetable stock until soft. That will speed up the process but the best flavours and colours come from roasting the beets.)
  2. While the beets are roasting, heat coconut oil in a pan and add chopped onions. Stir for about 5-7 min. Then add the rice and keep stirring to avoid it sticking to the pan and burning. Add half of the wine and keep stiring. When the rice absorbs all the wine, add the rest.
  3. Add garlic, stir it in and add half of stock (if you cooked the beets in the stock, make sure they are soft and take them out first, then blitz up the beets in a blender until smooth, making sure you leave one on the side, add the puree to the risotto and stir it in)
  4. Check on the beets in the oven and take them out if soft, leave one on the side and put the rest in a blender/food processor and blitz up until smooth. Add the puree to the risotto and stir it in. Add the remaining stock and keep stirring until the rice absorbs the liquid and the risotto becomes creamy.
  5. Chop finely the remaning beetroot and add it to the risotto, add rosemary and spinach. Keep stirring until the rice is soft but not overcooked. You might need to add more water.
  6. Add salt to taste. Serve with fresh rosemary and freshly ground pepper.

Enjoy!

Julia X

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