Beetroot risotto

Diana Henry’s beetroot risotto with Lancashire cheese

You can serve this as you would any risotto – with grated pecorino or parmesan on the side – but I like a subtler cheese, and since it isn’t strictly Italian I think it’s alright to use something unexpected. Crumbly Lancashire is perfect.

beetroot and folic acid

Folic acid

Beetroot contains folic acid which is essential for normal tissue growth. Folic acid is crucial in the development of the baby’s spinal cord.

Betacyanin, the pigment that gives beetroot its colour, is also an antioxidant. Antioxidants are believed to help reduce the oxidation of LDL cholesterol, in turn protecting artery walls and reducing the risk of heart disease and stroke.


To juice or not to juice?

Did you know that eating 200g of cooked beetroot provides the same health benefits as drinking 500ml of juice? So whether you are juicer or a snacker you can easily get your 5-a-day with beetroot!

In spring, it is said, a young man’s fancy turns to love. In autumn, the chef’s fancy (whether young or not) turns to the fantastic seasonal produce on offer: root vegetables, game, orchard fruits, truffles, mushrooms. And beetroot. Because beetroot can be a very exciting ingredient. I prize its vibrant red-purple hue (though it comes in a variety of colours) and its sweetness and extraordinary earthiness.

Heston Blumenthal

I don't understand why I spent my entire childhood pushing beetroot round my plate as if it was deadly nightshade. It's red, it's sweet, what's for a child not to like? The life-changing moment was when I made a dish of sliced beetroot in cream to go with slices of bloody, melting roasted rib of beef. The deeply savoury, crusty bits around the beef and the warm, sweet cream was love at first forkful.

Nigel Slater