Random Eats… Beetroot & Spinach Risotto (Gluten Free & Vegan)

I’m going to start sharing some of my favourite recipes with you. Recipes either devised myself, or adapted from similar ones that I’ve seen and edited to our own tastes/dietary requirements.  Dishes will always be vegan and gluten free.

This particularly one is quick, simple and very tasty.  It’s rich in iron (for those of you needing an energy boost), and bursting with flavour. It’s also really quick (around 10 minutes prep, and 30 minutes cooking time) and simple to make.

Both beetroot and spinach are in season at the moment, so should be easy to find everywhere. I will be sharing with you, the specific brands I use. Where possible, I always buy organic produce and ingredients, for many reasons (I’ll be writing a post about this in the future). Besides the environmental and health reasons, it is just tastes better in my opinion!

So, here we go. Ingredients first (I would say this serves around 3 people, but it really does depend on your portion sizes):

1.5 litres of stock, made from Marigold Vegetable Bouillon (Organic, Low Salt)

3 tablespoons of Biona Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil

350 g of Gallo Organic Arborio Risotto Rice

Generous amounts of parsley, sage and basil, to your preference (I use fresh from our garden).

3 medium sized beetroots (peeled and chopped into chunks)

Approximately 100g of spinach (more if you want lots of iron)

1 medium or large onion (depending on your preference).

Lemon wedges, to garnish.

All of the fruits and vegetables in this dish come from Wholegood and are organic, from their lovely vegetable boxes (delivered via Ocado, so no waiting around all day for your box) You can buy organic vegetables from most supermarkets, and local stores too.

So, here’s what you’re about to make… just to get your digestive juices flowing…

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Quick and simple directions:

1) Heat the olive oil in a large pan, over a low to medium heat (you can use a saucepan, but I sometimes use the wok, for space and stirring).

2) Add the onion, and saute for a few minutes, until the onion is softening and looking shiny.

3) Whilst the onion is cooking, boil the kettle, and pop around 4 teaspoons of marigold bouillon (adjust if using a different brand or type) into a measuring jug. Make stock once boiled.

4) Pop the rice into the pan, with the oil and onions. Give it a good stir, and cook for around 2 minutes.

5) Throw in the beetroot and herbs, As well as approximately one third of the stock (500ml) and simmer on a fairly low heat.

6) This is where you have to keep an eye on the rice. Wait until the stock is absorbed, before adding more.  A little at a time. Every time it’s absorbed, add a bit more. Until it’s all gone. The rice should be tender by the time all of the stock has been absorbed. Give it a taste if you’re not sure, it doesn’t do any harm to check!

7) Towards the end of cooking, pop in the spinach. Let them reduce and soften, giving them a good stir in. This won’t take more than a couple of minutes.

8) Remove from the heat, serve onto plates, with a wedge or two of lemon. I often add a little salt and pepper, to taste. A nice garnish of fresh parsley, if you have it, gives it an extra green look.

And there you have it, a beautiful dish, great at any time of the year. The beauty of a risotto is, that it can be made with pretty much anything you have around. So mix and match, have a play and let me know what you think of my recipe.

I really hope you enjoy it!

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