Our beautiful red risotto is tailor-made for a Valentine’s Day dinner with someone special. Be sure to buy beets with the tops still attached — you’ll need both the beetroots and the greens for this recipe.
Red Beet Risotto for 2
2 red beets, about 1 lb. total, greens removed and reserved
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
3 Tbs. olive oil
1 Tbs. unsalted butter
1/2 yellow onion, chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 cup Arborio rice
1/4 cup dry white wine
2 cups chicken broth, warmed
Chunk of Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese for grating
Preheat an oven to 400ºF.
Place the beets in a small baking dish. Season with salt and pepper and coat with 1 Tbs. of the olive oil. Cover the dish with aluminum foil, transfer to the oven and roast until the beets are tender when pierced with a knife, about 1 hour. When the beets are cool enough to handle, peel and cut into 1/2-inch pieces. Set aside.
Meanwhile, coarsely chop the beet greens and stems. In a sauté pan over medium-high heat, warm 1 Tbs. of the olive oil. Add the beet greens and stems and cook, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned, about 3 minutes. Set aside.
In a large saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter with the remaining 1 Tbs. olive oil. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 7 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds. Add the rice and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring constantly, until the rice is translucent, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the wine and stir until absorbed, about 1 minute. Add the broth 1/2 cup at a time, stirring constantly until it is almost completely absorbed before adding more.
When the rice is tender but firm to the bite, after about 20 minutes, remove from the heat. Grate about 1/2 cup cheese directly into the pan. Add the beets and stir well. Divide the risotto between 2 shallow bowls or plates and spoon the beet greens on the risotto. Using a vegetable peeler, shave cheese over the top and serve immediately. Serves 2.