Thursday, 16 February 2012

Beetroot and Goats Cheese Risotto

Considering the main ingredient of this post, you may be surprised to hear that I have not always been the biggest fan of beetroot. I suppose its just another example of how my palette has ‘grown up’ over the last few years. Back when I was at school, which still feels like it was yesterday but was in fact half a decade ago now (possibly the most depressing thought ever), I turned my nose up at salads, would poke a chopped anchovy around the plate, and screw up my face eating olives. I hated coffee, and the mere hint of spice in curry would deem it uneatable. Thankfully my taste buds have matured somewhat and I now actively enjoy some of the food stuffs that would have previously turned my stomach (I still refuse to eat raw tomato though, yuck).

Beetroot is one such flavour that I hadn’t really been able to get to grips with until relatively recently, I find it has an almost grimy flavour and I still wouldn’t choose to eat it on its own. However, I have found that when mixed in salads, or pureed with some lime juice, it can really compliment a dish. In this instance, more then complimenting the risotto, the beetroot is the main ingredient and flavour, but with the addition of yoghurt, goats cheese and white wine, it is not so overpowering, and is deliciously creamy. Its pretty great to look at too, I really ought to have posted this one for Valentines Day!!

 Serves 2
3 ready cooked vacuum packed beetroots (about 250g), half of them chopped and half pureed in a food processor
125g risotto rice
knob of butter
half a red onion, finely chopped
1 garlic clove, peeled and finely chopped
small glass of white wine
500ml vegetable stock
dollop of natural yoghurt
around 60g goats cheese, finely sliced
  1. Melt the butter in a saucepan then add the onion and garlic and soften over a low heat for around 5 minutes.
  2. Add the rice, and mix together, then pour in the wine and reduce. Add the pureed beetroot and stir.
  3. Slowly add the stock, a little at a time, stirring constantly after each addition and ensuring that the stock is absorbed before adding more. Continue until all the stock is used and the rice has plumped up, is fluffy and retains a slight bite. This should take around 20 minutes.

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