The Musette: Beetroot Orzo

Here’s a short and sweet dish which cooks all in one pan to a satisfying deep garnet red with the spoonable feeling of a risotto. You can use any colour of beetroot you like here; I prefer the deep magenta jewels of the red ones but yellow and pink work well too.

Ingredients (serves 4)

  • 750 gย  (26 oz) beetroot, peeled and grated
  • 300 g (10 oz) orzo pasta
  • 2 tbsp fresh thyme, leaves picked
  • 3โ€“4 fat cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 850 ml (3 1/2 cups) vegetable stock
  • sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
  • zest organic orange or clementine
  • 4 handfuls rocket (arugala)
  • 100g (3 1/2 oz) vegan feta-style cheese, crumbled
  • handful toasted chopped nuts (walnuts or hazelnuts)
  • drizzle balsamic vinegar to serve


1.Put the grated beetroot, pasta, thyme leaves, garlic and vinegar into a medium lidded pan with 1 tsp sea salt, 1 tbsp olive oil, stock and balsamic vinegar.

2. Place the pan over a high heat, cover with a lid and bring to the boil, then simmer for 10 minutes until the pasta is cooked and all the water has been absorbed. Stir regularly to ensure the pasta doesnโ€™t stick to the bottom of the pan. If the orzo looks a little thick (you want it to be the consistency of risotto) add a little more hot water.

3. Ladle onto warm dishes and finish with some orange zest, peppery rocket leaves, a crumbling of feta (if using), some toasted hazel nuts and a good drizzle of balsamic. See what I mean, it’s such an easy and satisfying dish.

20 Comments on “The Musette: Beetroot Orzo

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