bears paw food


 March is National Vegetarian Month and in honour of this we’re featuring a delicious special dish throughout the month:  Red & White Quinoa Risotto, aubergine, tomato & mozzarella fritter, buttered baby vegetables, feta cheese and pesto dressing.
Head Chef Scott comments: “Quinoa (pronounced ‘keen-wah’) is the ultimate superfood because it contains all eight of the essential amino acids. It’s even been recognised by the United Nations as a supercrop for its health benefits. And it tastes great too!”

Why not try your hand at this dish at home? Take a look at our recipe below:


  • 400g of mixed red & white quinoa
  • 50g butter
  • 25ml olive oil
  • 2 banana shallot – finely diced
  • 2 garlic cloves – crushed
  • 800ml  vegetable stock
  • 12 baby beetroots
  • 8 baby turnips –retain the leaves
  • 8 baby carrots
  • 8 baby leeks
  • 8 baby fennel
  • 100g garden peas
  • 100g shelled broad beans
  • 2 tbspn fresh chop herbs e.g. chives, parsley
  • 1 aubergine
  • 1 med tomato –sliced into 4
  • 1 buffalo mozzarella –sliced into 4
  • 1 tspn pesto
  • 25g plain flour
  • 1 egg
  • 80g panko breadcrumbs


Tomato & aubergine fritter (Make this first in advance):

Slice the aubergine into 8 x 1cm slices and pan fry  or char grill till tender – cool

Spread each slice with pesto and sandwich together with tomato & mozzarella in between 2 slices of aubergine to create 4 small sandwiches

Press gently for a couple of hours or overnight – pass the aubergine sandwiches through flour, egg & breadcrumb to give breadcrumb coating (pane) deep fry until crisp & golden keep warm

Baby veg:

Place the washed baby  beetroots in boiling vegetable stock & cook until tender – remove from the stock & peel – this is now the beetroot stock for the risotto

Place the remaining baby veg in boiling salted water until just cooked – then plunge into iced water to stop them cooking – drain well. Deep fry the turnip leaves until crisp


Melt 25g of butter and olive oil add shallot and garlic, cook until soft but not coloured

Add the quinoa and coat in the oil & butter add 2-3 ladles of the stock, cook gently until it absorbs the stock – repeat this until the quinoa is tender (you may need more or not all the stock) the risotto should be quite wet

Add the herbs, peas & broad beans – check seasoning & consistency

To serve:

  • Toss the baby veg in butter to reheat – do the beetroot separately
  • Place the risotto in the middle of the bowl/plate, place an aubergine fritter on top of the risotto
  • Decoratively arrange the baby veg around/on the risotto distributing evenly between the plates
  • Finish with the crispy turnip leaves & serve
  • A light cream sauce & simple green salad can also be served with it
  • For a non-vegetarian option add chicken or smoked pancetta – or both

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