Chef Chad Ellis Peters of David Ellis Events in Cedar Knolls takes advantage of the color and sweetness of beets to create a charming dish perfect for entertaining.
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1 fresh red beet
3 cups vegetable broth
1 tbsp. olive oil
1 small white onion (minced)
1 garlic clove (minced)
1 cup Arborio rice
½ cup dry white wine
Salt and pepper to taste
1 small zucchini
½ cup crème fraiche
Peel and dice the beet, and puree it in a food processor. Reserve for later.
Bring vegetable broth to a light boil in a sauce pot.
In a large sauté pan over medium heat, gently sweat the onions and garlic with olive oil. Once the onions are translucent, add the rice and continue to cook, allowing the grains to become slightly toasted.
Add the wine and simmer until most of the liquid has evaporated. With a ladle, slowly add hot vegetable broth to the rice, ½ cup at a time until absorbed. Continue adding broth and stirring until all broth has been incorporated.
Turn off the heat, add beet puree, and stir until mixed. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Spread risotto on a parchment-lined baking tray and allow to cool completely in the refrigerator.
Remove the stem and bottom ends from the zucchini. Using a mandoline, make lengthwise paper-thin slices.
Form the risotto into a “timbale” shape using a 1-inch round cookie cutter. Lay out each zucchini slice and roll the risotto timbale over it, allowing the zucchini to stick to the sides.
To Serve: Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Arrange timbales on a parchment-lined cookie sheet and bake for 5-10 minutes until warm. Top each with a small dollop of crème fraiche.
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