Beetroot Risotto with Walnuts & Goat's Cheese

This was my first active attempt at trying to eat more seasonally and locally- and how easy it was!

Seasonal ingredients are everywhere, and so easy to source. Bonus : due to their abundance they will also always be cheaper than their out of season, imported counter-parts (anyone every tried to buy avocados out of season will understand this). An entire bunch of beetroot cost me R8, and this was easily enough to make a meal for two, with leftovers. This risotto makes the most of this fantastically purple-hued vegetable - your stock is made from the liquid the beetroot is cooked in, a beetroot puree is added once the risotto is cooked, and before serving, your bowl is topped with a few balsamic roasted cubes of beetroot.
If beetroot isn't your favourite vegetable (before now, it had always been the sweet and sour braai accompaniment for me!) I think this would work wonderfully with butternut or pumpkin. 
Sadly I didn't have any goat's cheese on hand, but I think it would be amazing sprinkled on top.

500g fresh beetroot
1 onion, finely chopped
1 chicken or vegetable stock cube, or 1 tbsp stock concentrate
3 handfuls of risotto rice (Arborio)
100ml white wine
olive oil
1 tbsp Balsamic vinegar (or reduction, if you have)
walnuts to serve
goat's cheese to serve

Preheat your oven to 200 degrees C. Cut half of your 500g of beetroot into bite-sized cubes, and place in a roasting dish. Drizzle with olive oil, and place in the oven for 30 minutes, or until cooked through and tender. When they are done, drizzle with the balsamic vinegar immediately, and place to one side.

Bring a pot of water to the bowl. While you are waiting, peel and cut the remaining beetroot into chunks, and place in boiling water to cook until tender - this could take around 20 minutes (do this while the other half of your beetroot is roasting). Once tender, remove from water, but do not throw the beetroot water away - the colour from this water adds extra intensity to the finished risotto.

To make the puree, place the boiled beetroot in a bowl, and blend with a hand blender until completely smooth. Keep until needed.

Add your stock cubes or concentrate to the beetroot water, and allow to dissolve. You should have about 750ml of liquid - you can add more water if you have less than that at this stage.

In another pot, drizzle a little olive oil, and add your finely chopped onion. Allow the onion to soften, then add your rice. Stir until your rice is evenly coated in the onion and oil, and has "crisped" a little on the outside. Add your white wine, and stir until it has completely evaporated. Add half a cup of your beetroot / stock liquid, and stir until absorbed by the rice. Continue adding this liquid, half a cup at a time, until your risotto is cooked through - the outside of the grain should be soft, but the inside should still have some "bite". Add the puree now, and stir through. You'll now have the most vibrant, deep purple risotto.

To serve, sprinkle the roasted beetroot on top, with a few walnuts and a sprinkling of goat's cheese.


Post a Comment


Meet the author

Google analytics

On Twitter : @AGorgeousLifeSA

On Instagram : @agorgeouslife