Beet and Strawberry Risotto
By Chef Geoffrey Zakarian
2 medium beets, whole (skin on)
¾ cup sherry vinegar
3 ½ tablespoons honey
3 shallots, minced
3 cups hulled and coarsely chopped strawberries (just under 1 pound)
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
½ small yellow onion, diced
1 ½ cups risotto rice, preferably carnaroli
1 cup dry white wine
1 ½ cups chicken stock, homemade or store-bought
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons crème fraiche
For the Beets:
Preheat the oven to 375ºF.
Cover a small roasting pan (a cake pan will work) with kosher salt to a depth of about ¼ inch. Place the beets on the salt and roast them in the oven until a paring knife stuck into one of them encounters no resistance, at least 1 hour. Remove the beets from the oven, allow them to cool, then peel and dice them.
For the Gastrique:
Place the vinegar, honey, and shallots in a small nonreactive saucepan over medium heat and simmer, stirring occasionally until the mixture reduces by three quarters, about 7 minutes. Remove the pot from the heat and allow to cool.
Purée 2 cups of the strawberries in a blender, then set aside.
For the Risotto:
Place the oil in a medium skillet over medium heat.
Add the onion and sweat until translucent, about 5 minutes.
Add the rice and cook, stirring frequently with a wooden spoon, until it no longer appears chalky on the outside, about 3 minutes.
Add the wine and simmer, stirring frequently and scraping the bottom of the pot with the spoon, until rice has absorbed most of the wine, about 5 minutes.
Add the stock and simmer, stirring, until the stock has largely been absorbed, about 7 minutes more.
Stir in the reserved gastrique and the strawberry purée. Continue simmering and stirring until the rice is fluffy but still firm to the taste, about 3 minutes more.
Add the remaining 1 cup of strawberries and the beets.
Stir in the butter and crème fraiche and serve immediately.
Autumn Harvest White Sangria
A sangria featuring a light, crisp white wine and packed full of seasonal fruits.