Beetroot is something I have been trying to add more of into my diet. I do already eat it quite often, but since finding out that it is very high in iron, its something I have tried to be more mindful of eating especially around my period to help replenish lost stores. I also love beetroot because its a blood builder as well as a liver detoxifier, this is perfect for women with hormone imbalance like mine. Since I was very underweight for most of my life and quite malnourished with quite a few nutrient deficiencies it meant that my hormones were generally low, but also my liver wasn’t getting the nutrients it needed to process my hormones probably so I ended up in a pattern of low hormones but estrogen dominant in the second part of my cycle as well. Beetroot is a wonderful food to address both of these issues, its properties also make it a great food for pregnancy in the first trimester (and beyond) as it can help nourish the body while also helping to process the extra hormones that can lead to morning sickness. The addition of mushrooms in this recipe makes is extra high in iron. Because I always like to use whole grain rice like brown rice or wild rice (for the fibre, blood sugar control and extra nutrients), I don’t make my risotto in the traditional way by slowly adding in water until the rice becomes creamy. Brown rice is too tough to absorb water the same way as arborio rice but I do find that having the brown rice precooked helps give the risotto a very similar consistency.
I developed this recipe for Everyday Rewards with ingredients from Woolworths. The main ingredients that this recipe can not do without is the pre-cooked beetroot found in those vacuum seal packs. This beetroot has been life-changing for me! cooking my own beetroot is always the messiest and most time-consuming experience and I simply refuse to do it again! This is the key to this risotto and what gives it a nice pink colour. If you prefer you can leave the beetroot unblinded and just cut some chunks to toss through the risotto instead. The recipe is vegan and naturally gluten-free.
|Vegan Beetroot and Mushroom Brown Rice Risotto|| |
- 1½ cups precooked brown rice
- 1 TBSP olive oil
- 1 brown onion - diced
- 2 cloves garlic
- 4 cups thickly sliced mushrooms
- salt and pepper to taste
- ⅓ cup cashews
- 4 small pre-cooked beetroot (from the vacuum-sealed pack)
- 1 cup soy milk ( other plant-based milk will work but soy gives the most authentic taste)
- ½ tsp paprika
- 1 TBSP nutritional yeast
- juice half small lemon
- 1 tsp tahini
- Make your beetroot cream by blending all the cream ingredients in a blender until smooth and set aside. I like to let my cashews sit in the soy milk for 10 - 15 minutes before blending.
- Gently fry off the brown onion in the olive oil until soft and lightly browned. Add in crushed garlic and fry for a few more seconds until it becomes fragrant.
- Add your chopped mushrooms and allow them to cook adding salt and pepper to taste. The mushrooms will shrink in size and release water as they cook.
- Once the mushrooms are cooked and most of the mushroom water has evaporated, reduce heat to low and add the cooked brown rice to the mushroom mixture and mix through.
- Slowly add your cream mixture a little at a time while mixing the cream through the rice. The rice will absorb the cream.
- Adjust salt and pepper to taste.
- Garnish with extra parsley and vegan parmesan cheese or vegan feta/goats cheese. Best eaten straight away while still hot.