Risotto-orzo Beets

It's no secret that Patrick and I have a thing for beets. Ever since they started showing up on our CSA I think we've gotten them every week. They make appearances for a few weeks on our CSA in the spring and then again in the fall. We do our best to take full advantage of the beets!

Not sure why Whitney wrote an intro and then assigned this post to me, but Patrick here. We also have a thing for risotto, so we're always excited when we can combine them and make beet risotto! So excited that even though we discovered we were out of arborio rice when we started making it, we went ahead and improvised by replacing it with orzo. Using the same cooking technique you actually get surprisingly similar results as the arborio rice, so we were quite pleased (I was skeptical it would work). One thing we have trouble with is allowing enough time for the beets to roast (they always take longer than we expect), so sometimes we end up with not-so-tender beets, but they're still delicious.

We also added swiss chard to this, but thankfully the beets and orzo were good enough to offset one of my least favorite greens. Then we enjoyed a wonderful dinner outside on the deck with the rest of the wine!

Beet Risotto with Swiss Chard & Brie from Pete's Greens
Serves 4
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter
2 (2 1/2- to 3-inch-diameter) beets, peeled, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1 1/2 cups chopped yellow onion
4 large leaves chard, stems and leaves chopped separately
2 1/2 cups chicken or vegetable stock
1/2 cup white wine
1 cup arborio rice or medium-grain white rice
5 ounce Brie, rind discarded, cut into small pieces

Melt butter in heavy large saucepan over medium heat. Add beets, onion and chard stems. Cover; cook until onion is soft, about 8 minutes. Meanwhile, heat broth in a small saucepan. Once the onion is soft, mix the rice into the beets and onion. Saute for a minute. Add wine and simmer briskly, stirring, until wine has been absorbed, about 1 minute. Add 1/2 cup hot broth and briskly simmer, stirring, until broth has been absorbed. Continue simmering and adding hot broth, about 1/2 cup at a time, stirring constantly and waiting until each addition has been absorbed before adding the next, until rice is just tender and looks creamy, 15 to 20 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Stir in chard greens and brie a minute or two before removing from heat.

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