This is another of my own recipes, complete fluke, but it definitely paid off. The subtle flavours of the beetroot and parsley compliment the pigeon breast, and the meat juices add someone special to the dish.
Ingredients (serves 4)
for the risotto -
- a dash of vegetable oil
- one red onion, sliced
- 2 cloves of garlic, crushed
- 200g risotto rice
- 2 tbsp red or white wine
- 2 handfuls of chopped parsley
- 3 beets without skin, roughly chopped, and 200ml beetroot water
- 600ml vegetable stock
- salt and pepper
for the pigeon -
- a little oil
- 4 pigeon breasts
1. If you are using fresh beetroot rather than 'ready made' packeted beetroot, I like to cook them in a pressure cooker because it takes less time (around 25 minutes). Cut off the leaves of the beets and place them in a pressure cooker or pan with a lid on, half cover them with water, and cook for 20-40 minutes. (NB: when they are cooked, hold them under cold water to remove the skins easily...they should just peal away).
2. You can begin making the risotto when the beets have been cooking for 15 minutes. Place a little vegetable oil in a large pan or wok and add the onion and garlic. Cook these on a medium heat for a few minutes and then add the risotto rice.
3. Stir the rice until coated in the oil and pour in the wine. Gradually add the beetroot water (to give it colour and a little flavour), stirring the risotto frequently. Then do the same with the vegetable stock for roughly 12 minutes. Add the beetroot (if it is ready), parsley, salt and pepper, and cook for a further 5 minutes.
4. Whilst the risotto is finishing off, start to fry your pigeon breasts in oil. Cover the pan with a lid, this will help to produced some delicious juices from the meat. The pigeon shouldn't take more than 6 minutes (if you like it slightly pink), by which time the risotto will be done.
5. Plate the dish up and pour over the lovely pigeon juices.