Risottos don’t just have to be savoury, there are plenty that you can make for dessert as well. Blackberries are perfect for a dessert risotto because of their vibrant colour and sweet taste. They are also extremely abundant around August, and if you’re the foraging type you can get them for free. This dish is made in exactly the same way as a regular risotto, with the building up of the liquid as the rice cooks, only here we’re using oat milk instead of stock. Just like stock, you will want to heat the milk before you start adding it to the rice, otherwise each time you add some the whole dish will cool down. You will also need to stay with the pot as you are cooking, or at least nearby, as the rice absorbs the moisture quickly, so you only have to turn your back for a short time to end up with a dry pan.
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Risottos are best served straight away, but if you do want to keep this for later, then I would suggest refrigerating it as soon as possible and adding more milk, or even dairy-free cream, when you are heating it back up. Otherwise it will be too dry.
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Vegan Blackberry Risotto
Cooking time: about 45 minutes
1 tbsp coconut oil
250g risotto rice
1 litre oat milk, heated either in a pan or microwave
¼ tsp ground nutmeg
½ tsp ground cinnamon
150g unrefined sugar
200g blackberries, fresh or frozen, plus a few extra to garnish
4 tbsp coconut yoghurt
1 tbsp coconut nectar (maple syrup is also fine)
Drizzle of dairy-free cream to garnish
Heat the oil in a large pan or wok (wide, shallower pans are better for this than narrow deep ones). Fry the rice for about 3 minutes on a medium heat, stirring often to prevent sticking or burning. Add about 150ml of the milk. It will start to bubble and disappear immediately. Stir it a little and, when the milk has nearly been absorbed, add another 150ml or so. Put in the nutmeg and cinnamon, stir and allow the milk to mostly absorb.
Keep going in this manner: adding a little milk, stirring a bit and letting it absorb. When you are halfway through the milk, add the sugar and stir in. When you have about 200ml of milk left add the blackberries, remembering to leave some back for garnishing. Once all the milk is in and nearly absorbed you can put in the yoghurt and coconut nectar (or syrup, if using). Stir in and taste to see if the rice is cooked. If it needs a little longer you can always add a splash more milk to keep the dish going. The whole thing will take about 45 minutes in total for the rice to fully cook. Once the rice is cooked, leave to stand for 5 minutes or so before serving, then divide into 4 bowls, drizzle with dairy-free cream and top with some blackberries.
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