Beets are one of those vegetables I always avoided. I don’t remember having had them growing up, much less whether the experience was good or bad, so I’m not sure where my aversion to beets came from. Last year during our CSA though, beets were plentiful… and after weeks of our CSA owner urging me to try them, I finally, albeit reluctantly, took some home. Beets took me by surprise that week…I ended up throwing together this summer salad and loving every bite of it. This year, rather than avoiding beets, I’ve been anticipating them with excitement in my CSA basket. Unfortunately though, the beet harvest hasn’t been as good this year due to the weather. I did get enough beets to make this colorful risotto though; it’s a wonderful summer side or lunch. If you come across fresh beets this summer whether through a CSA, a farmer’s market, or your friend’s vegetable garden, don’t be like last year me and avoid them…make this risotto!
- 3-4 red beets (you can use golden too, I just liked the color!)
- 3 1/2 cups chicken or vegetable broth
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 1/2 onion, diced
- 1 clove garlic
- 1 cup arborio rice
- 1/2 cup dry white wine
- 1/2 cup parmesan-romano cheese, grated
- Fresh parsley, for garnish
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and wrap the beets in aluminum foil. Place them on a baking sheet and roast them in the oven about 20 minutes or until they are easily pierced with a fork. Once cool, peel and dice the beets.
In a small pot, bring the broth to a simmer. In a medium sauce pan, heat the oil over medium heat. Dice the onion and garlic, and then add the onion to the pan and cook until translucent. Add in the garlic and cook a couple minutes longer until browned.
Pour in the rice and cook 1-2 minutes. Add in the wine and bring the mixture to a simmer, stirring frequently, until the rice has absorbed most of the wine. Continue this process with the broth, adding it 1/2 cup at a time, until the rice has absorbed the broth. Stir in the beets with the last of the broth.
Turn off the heat and stir in the cheese. Garnish with parsley if desired, and serve warm.