A couple of weeks ago, my girlfriend told me about a gorgeous red beet risotto she had seen in a magazine. Inspired, we decided to make one for dinner. We chose this recipe because it pairs the beets with sharp cheddar cheese. The vibrant color of the risotto would be perfect for any Valentine's Day meal — especially when served in a heart-shaped dish. The flavor is rich, creamy, and was even well-liked by my beet-hating father. It's not difficult to make, so take a look at the recipe when you read more.
1 medium beet, peeled and quartered
2 cups loosely packed beet greens, stems trimmed
2 cups water
2 cups vegetable broth
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 medium onion, minced
1 cup arborio rice
8 ounces shredded sharp cheddar cheese (2 cups)
Salt and freshly ground pepper
Freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, for serving
- Place the beet in a food processor and pulse until finely chopped. Add the beet greens and pulse until finely chopped.
- In a medium saucepan, bring the water and vegetable broth to a simmer.
- Heat the oil in a large saucepan. Add the onion and cook over moderately high heat, stirring, until softened, 3 minutes.
- Add the rice and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Stir in the beets and beet greens and cook for 1 minute.
- Add the broth to the large saucepan, 1 cup at a time, and cook over moderate heat, stirring, until the liquid is nearly absorbed between additions, 20 minutes.
- Add the cheddar; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring until the risotto is creamy and thick, 3 minutes longer.
- Serve in deep bowls, passing the Parmigiano-Reggiano on the side.