Adapted from Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone by Deborah Madison
This risotto has a marvelous jewel-like color! It has a delicious deep taste, tempered by the greens, lemon and parmesan. If you want a proper risotto texture you need to use Arborio or another starchy short grain rice and keep stirring! Keep you stock hot as you add it to the risotto – cold stock will not give you the creamy texture that you want in a risotto. This would make a lovely main course or a starter for a larger meal. If you are vegan you can substitute the butter with olive oil and leave out the Parmesan. A food processor would make short work of grating the beets!
5-1/2 to 6-1/2 cups vegetable stock, including beet or chard stems
3 tablespoons of butter, or a mixture of butter and olive oil or just olive oil
1-1/2 cups Arborio rice
1/2 cup dry white wine or dry vermouth
2 tablespoons chopped parsley
2 tablespoons chopped basil or one tablespoon dried basil
2 to 3 medium beets, peeled and grated, about 2 cups
2 to 3 cups of greens, beet greens, chard, kale or spinach, all stems removed and finely chopped
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Grated zest and the juice from one lemon
1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
Get your stock simmering on a low simmer on the stove. Using a wide pot, heat your butter (or olive oil or mixture of both) and add your onion. Cook over medium heat a few minutes, stirring frequently. Add the rice, stir to coat well and cook for a couple of minutes. Add the wine and simmer until absorbed, then stir in half of the parsley, the basil, the grated beets and your chard or kale. Add 2 cups of stock, cover and cook at a lively simmer until the stock is absorbed. Begin to add the remainder of your hot stock in 1/2 cup increments, stirring constantly until each addition of stock is absorbed before adding the next. When you have about one cup of stock left add your beet greens or spinach. Taste for salt, season with pepper and stir in the lemon juice and the lemon zest. Remove from heat, stir in your Parmesan and the remaining parsley. Serve with extra cheese at the table.