What to do
- Heat the butter and oil in a large saucepan over a medium heat. Add the chopped beets, shallots, garlic and thyme leaves. Cook gently for 3 minutes until the onion has softened, but hasn’t colored.
- Heat the stock to a simmering point.
- Add the rice to the pan and stir to coat all the grains in the buttery mixture. Cook, stirring, for another 1-2 minutes until the grains begin to look translucent.
- Add the vermouth to the pan and allow it to bubble up and reduce slightly. Add a ladleful of the simmering stock, and stir until all of the liquid has been absorbed. Continue adding the stock, a ladleful at a time, as the liquid is absorbed, stirring between each addition. Make sure to stir constantly.
- Cook the rice until the grains are tender but still have a little bite. It will take at least 20 minutes.
- This risotto really does need quite a lot of salt, but if you’ve used good home-made stock, the dish should already be quite salty. Add the cream if you’re using it (it makes the dish richer and also a paler color, so it’s up to you whether you it at all), the pecorino and parsley. Taste and adjust the seasoning and serve immediately.
What you’ll Need
2 tbsp olive oil
400g cooked beets, chopped into pieces
2 shallots, peeled and finely chopped
Leaves from 1 sprig of fresh thyme
900ml chicken or vegetable stock
250g risotto rice
125ml dry vermouth
2 tbsp double cream (optional)
110g pecorino, grated
small handful of fresh parsley, chopped
salt and freshly ground black pepper