Beetrorzotto

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.

Ingredients

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)

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700ml water made with 1 chicken stock melt/cube (or veg)

Small bunch of dill, chopped finely (reserving some for a final sprinkling)

Instructions

  1. 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).
  2. Add the garlic, beetroot, orzo, and stock and bring to the boil.
  3. 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.
  4. 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.