Bacon and Turnip Risotto

Turnips tend to get a bad rap-- they're a humble vegetable with the reputation of being what you eat when there aren't any other choices. Well this week we CHOOSE to use turnips is this risotto recipe. Never made risotto? Don't let it intimidate you. First, find Arborio rice (it's at Publix), then pick up some stock. Risotto does require attention and stirring but the creamy result is totally worth it. Once you get a handle on it, feel free to get creative and switch out some ingredients: risotto tastes amazing with beets, Swiss chard, kale, mushrooms, or sausage in the winter; or tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, basil, or squash in the summer!

Ingredients

  • 3 bacon slices
  • 1 small onion
  • 2 medium turnips (preferably with greens; about 1/2 pound total)
  • 3 1/2 cups chicken broth
  • 3/4 cup Arborio rice
  • Garnish: freshly grated Parmesan

Instructions

1. In a 3-quart heavy saucepan cook bacon over moderate heat until crisp and golden and transfer with a slotted spoon to paper towels to drain. Reserve 1 tablespoon fat in pan.
2. Chop onion. Peel turnips and cut into 1/4-inch dice (if using greens, cut into 1/4-inch-wide slices and chop stems).
3. In a saucepan bring broth to a simmer and keep at a bare simmer.
4. Heat reserved fat over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking and sauté onion, stirring, until just beginning to soften. Stir in turnips (and greens if using) and rice and sauté, stirring constantly, 1 minute.
5. Stir in 1 cup simmering broth and cook, stirring constantly and keeping at a strong simmer, until absorbed. Continue simmering and adding broth, about 1/2 cup at a time, stirring constantly and letting each addition be absorbed before adding next, until rice is tender and creamy-looking but still al dente, about 18 minutes total.
6. Crumble bacon. Serve risotto sprinkled with bacon and garnished with Parmesan.

Posted on January 14, 2015 .