Serves 2-3 people
Prep 10 mins
Cook 30 mins
I challenge those adverse to beetroot to actually give this a go. I am definitely converted from unsure, to a beetroot lover after eating this. This is proper creamy comfort food that uses fresh dill and feta to make a delicious and unusual combination. The dish can be adapted very simply to achieve vegetarian, vegan, or wheat-free status. See my swap suggestions beneath the recipe.
BEETROOT- Beetroot are high in potassium, magnesium, iron, vitamin A, B6, C, folic acid and anti-oxidants. (SOURCE http://www.webmd.boots.com/healthy-eating/guide/beetroot-benefits ) The nitrates in beetroot help lower blood pressure and may help heart disease. Also, beets contain boron which is good for sexual stamina and all-round energy levels! This dish is definitely sexy with its deep red colour. (SOURCE http://www.undergroundhealth.com/12-healthiest-foods-on-earth/ )
DILL – Dill has been used as a digestive aid in herbal medicine for years, but also is a brilliant immune system booster. Dill also contains anti-carcinogenic properties. (SOURCE https://www.organicfacts.net/health-benefits/seed-and-nut/dill.html )
CAROTINO OIL-If you haven’t heard of carotino oil before then you must go out and keep some stocked in the cupboard. It’s a great, cheap way of incorporating, even more, vitamins in your food. Carotino includes antioxidants, vitamins A & E, and Omegas 3 & 6. Due to it’s vibrant orange colour it does have a tendency to stain food- a fried egg didn’t look too appealing when I tried it. But it does however work fantastically with this vibrant dish.
1 tbsp carotino oil
2 garlic clove (chopped finely)
1 red onion (chopped)
250g packed beetroot, including juices not in vinegar (chopped roughly)
100g feta cheese (made into little squares)
200g orzo (small, rice shaped pasta)
700ml water made with 1 chicken stock melt/cube (or veg)
Small bunch of dill, chopped finely (reserving some for a final sprinkling)
- Heat the oil in a large non-stick pan (or even a non-stick wok would do) and lightly fry the onion until cooked (10 mins).
- Add the garlic, beetroot, orzo, and stock and bring to the boil.
- Reduce the heat and leave to simmer for around 15 mins, check the orzo every now and then. Remember this is pasta not rice, so you want to retain a little bit of bite.
- Stir in the dill and then plate up, adding your feta cubes on top, along with the reserved dill.
I served the beetrorzotto with my sweetheart coleslaw. The crunchy textures against the velvety beetroot and orzo makes a lovely contrast. You could also serve with a crisp salad or garlic bread.
Something you can’t eat in the ingredients list? Make the following swaps-
DAIRY- Feta – You can actually source non-dairy feta if you do not eat dairy foods. Any other vegetarian cheese would go well here.
WHEAT / GLUTEN – Orzo – Replace with a wheat/gluten free small shape pasta or you could alternatively use rice but make sure to extend the cooking time.