I’m having a ‘no shop’ week this week which is something I like to do every now and then, where I don’t buy any food that week, just use up things in the cupboards and freezer. It’s a really helpful concept for reducing your food waste and also encouraging yourself to get inventive with ingredients in the kitchen – as well as saving time! And it’s the reason we had this simple Beetroot Risotto for dinner.
When I was holding a bunch of five beetroot from the fridge and asking the children if there was anything they hadn’t eaten for a while they would like me to make soon, my daughter beamed: ‘Beetroot Risotto – I love it and it’s been ages since we last had it!’ She was right, the easy, earthy risotto was once a staple, known in years gone by as Princess Rice thanks to its bright pink colour.
I know some people fret about making risotto but there really is no need. I like to roast the beetroot while the rice is cooking so it’s actually a really quick dish, or you could roast the beetroot in advance while something else is in the oven. You don’t need to stand over it stirring the pot, just keep an eye on it, stir regularly and add the stock as you go. You can make this as loose as you like with extra water or even a couple spoonfuls of mascarpone cheese if you like your risotto really creamy.
Simple Beetroot Risotto
- 1 tablespoon of butter or coconut oil
- I large red onion, finely diced
- 300g risotto rice
- 5 small or 3 large beetroot, peeled and cut into small chunks
- 1 vegetable stock cube in 1 litre of boiling water
- 50g Parmesan or Parmesan style cheese (extra to serve)
- salt and pepper
- Step 1 Heat oven to 200C/fan 180C/gas 6. Place the beetroot chunks on a baking tray and spray with a little oil. Cook for around 20mins until all the pieces are soft.
- Step 2 While they are cooking heat the butter or oil in a saucepan. Add the onion and cook on a medium heat with the lid on until soft. It will take a few minutes.
- Step 3 Stir the rice into the onion and make sure it’s coated with the butter/oil. Pour over a third of the stock. You can then leave it and stir it every few minutes, adding a bit more stock until after about 10mins when you should have added all the stock and be able to see the rice plumping.
- Step 4 It will take around 25mins for the rice to be cooked through. At this point add the beetroot chunks and the Parmesan. Stir to combine and season to taste.
- Step 5 Serve with extra Parmesan.