celeriac risotto with wild mushrooms and hazelnuts

Chef Gizzi Erskine and nutritionist Rosemary Ferguson, who work together under the name Pure Filth, are determined to prove that introducing many more portions of fruit and veg into your diet is achievable, and – importantly – filling and full of flavour, too. We will be publishing their veg-packed recipes on Telegraph Food. 

This week: celeriac risotto with wild mushrooms and hazelnuts

Gizzi says: Who remembers the Nineties, when, if you were a vegetarian, you were offered a vegetable risotto laced with a vegetable puree and roasted pieces of veg, mostly butternut squash? I got sick to the back teeth of it.

This risotto is very different. The celeriac puree, all velvety and white, makes a clean but indulgent tasting risotto. It’s bonkers to think of the minimal amount of fat in it.

Here, spiked with only a little parmesan and gorgonzola and topped with garlicky pan-roasted cubes of celeriac, mushrooms and hazelnuts, I give you a revised version of the snoozathon Nineties classic.

SERVES FOUR

INGREDIENTS

  • 250g cleaned wild mushrooms, such as girolles, chanterelles or ceps
  • 200g Arborio rice
  • 2 tbsp ghee
  • 2 tbsp rapeseed oil
  • 400g celeriac, cut into small cubes
  • Additional 100g celeriac, cut into 8mm cubes
  • 600ml fresh chicken/vegetable stock
  • 250ml white wine
  • 5 banana shallots, finely chopped
  • 50g parmesan, grated
  • 20g roasted hazelnuts, very roughly chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 70g Gorgonzola
  • 2 tbsp flat leaf parsley, finely chopped
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

METHOD

  1. First, make your celeriac puree. Heat 2 tablespoons of ghee in a pan and sweat the celeriac for about 15 minutes until soft and cooked through.
  2. Remove from the heat and transfer to a food processor, and then whizz until smooth.
  3. To make the risotto, first heat 1 teaspoon of ghee and a tbsp of the rapeseed oil in a heavy bottomed pan.
  4. Add the shallots and fry gently until they are soft, for about 5-8 minutes.
  5. Then add the rice, and stir into the onions until each grain is coated in the fat, for 1 minute.
  6. Next pour in the wine and allow to bubble while stirring until it has evaporated into the rice and it starts to get creamy.
  7. Now grab a ladle and add the stock, one ladle full at a time, stirring all the while so the rice absorbs it. This is the way to guarantee a lovely creamy risotto.
  8. Once you’ve added all of the stock, stir in the celeriac puree, followed by the parmesan. Season well with salt and pepper.
  9. While this is cooking very gently, quickly heat up 1 tablespoon of rapeseed oil in a frying pan over a high heat. Add the little cubes of celeriac and fry for a few minutes until cooked through and beginning to caramelise.
  10. At this stage add the mushrooms and fry until all of their juices have evaporated and they start to caramelise.
  11. Next add the garlic to the mushrooms and fry for a couple of minutes, followed by the hazelnuts, and lastly the parsley.
  12. Finally, roughly crumble the gorgonzola into the risotto and stir through loosely, so as not to break up the cheese too much.
  13. Divide the risotto onto four plates, and top equally with the celeriac, mushroom and hazelnut mixture.
  14. Drizzle a little more rapeseed oil over each plate and eat immediately!

Rosemary's nutritional low-down

  • Celeriac is part of the carrot family and possesses the same polyphenols that act as antioxidants in the body. They are a brilliant source of vitamin K, which helps to strengthen bones. There is also research that Vitamin K has a role in brain health. It also has some C and B vitamins.
  • Celeriac has loads of minerals including phosphorus and iron both which help the metabolism and energy levels. Wild mushrooms and mushrooms in general have wonderful health benefits; they are brilliant for the immune system and can really help to reduce inflammation. Hazelnuts provide good fats and protein.
  • The gorgonzola was a much discussed ingredient in the recipe… it is delicious and that's why it's in - as Gizzi says, it gives roundness to the meal, plus it is a source of protein and some calcium. But you should be careful of your saturated fat intake, which is why the amount in the recipe is not outrageous.
  • Gizzi has used Arborio rice and this gives you lots of fibre (great to help your digestion keep moving). Rice is really soothing for the gut too because it is mucilaginous; it is also a good source of vitamin B and magnesium. This sort of meal would be great at lunchtime and will keep full all afternoon. It is a good one for the immune and general well-being. A large helping will give you three of your 10 a day, with the celeriac, mushrooms, parsley and hazelnuts.

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