I love risotto. Love. Love. Love. I have about 25 different risotto recipes that I used to make all of the time - and then I'd change them and make new ones and risotto is so easy to make and has so much flavour and nomnomnom.
But I can't eat arborio rice any more *sob* and I've been having a really hard time getting the texture that I love and the flavours and the whole thing to come together with other grains. Risotto with risoni has been the best texture option, but I wanted to use something grainy and not pasta-y. I've tried quinoa based risotto before, and it didn't rock my world. However, a couple of nights ago I decided to make risotto, couldn't find risoni at the supermarket, and had some quinoa kicking about at home. So I decided to give it another go.
Oh yeah, it was a win!!
So here's the recipe....There's lots of prep (roasting the beetroot and garlic, cooking the quinoa, making beetroot stock, making a cashew paste) but it takes less than an hour and is really incredibly worth it.
Roasted Beetroot and Garlic Quinoa Risotto
- 1 and 1/2 cups quinoa
- 3 cups vegetable stock
- 3 medium-large fresh beetroot, with stalks and leaves
- 1 head of garlic + 2 cloves garlic
- 1/2 cup raw cashews
- 1/3 cup nutritional yeast
- 1/2 teaspoon seasoning salt
- 1 teaspoon onion flakes
- 3 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1/2 vegan stock cube + 1 litre water
- 2 tablespoons Nuttelex
- 1/2 teaspoon chilli flakes
- 2 tablespoons olive oil + 1 tablespoon + 1 tablespoon
- 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- dash hot sauce
Preheat the oven to 200 degrees Celcius.
Cut the stalks and leaves off the beetroot and set to one side. These will be used later. Scrub the beetroot and put onto a baking tray. Bake in the oven for 1 to 2 hours, until slightly blackened outside and cooked inside. Set aside to cool. When cool, peel and cube.
Cut the top off the head of garlic and drizzle with the 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Bake in the oven until soft and the top is golden. Remove from the oven and cool.
Cook quinoa is three cups of vegetable stock until tender - about 20 minutes in a rice cooker, 35 minutes on the stove. Set to one side.
Mince the 2 cloves of garlic. Wash and finely slice the beetroot stalks. Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat, and saute the garlic and beetroot stalks. Add the stock cube and litre of water. Allow to come to a simmer, and cook for about 15 minutes. Strain the garlic and stalks out of the liquid. Return the liquid to a low heat and allow to simmer.
Grind the cashews, nutritional yeast, salt and onion flakes until a fine powder is formed. Squeeze in the roasted garlic and lemon juice and process until a paste is formed. Set to one side.
Wash and finely slice the beetroot leaves. Set 1/3 aside.
Melt the Nuttelex in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the cooked quinoa and stir through. Pour in a third of the beetroot stock and stir through until absorbed. Add half of the cubed beetroot. Pour in another third of the beetroot stock and stir through until absorbed. Add the remaining beetroot and the cashew-garlic paste and stir through until well mixed. Add the 2/3 of the beetroot leaves and stir through. Finally, add the final 1/3 of the beetroot stock and stir until absorbed. Take off the heat.
Whisk together the 2 tablespoons olive oil, balsamic vinegar and hot sauce. Toss with the remaining 1/3 of the beetroot leaves.
Spoon the risotto onto a plate and top with the dressed beetroot leaves. Serve and consume!!