Staying in your Bubble with Forty Hall Fizz (and a Valentines recipe)

February 02, 2021

Staying in your Bubble with Forty Hall Fizz (and a Valentines recipe)

Here at the vineyard, we try to stay positive. Even though this year hasn’t started the way any of us wanted, one trivial thing we don’t have to worry about is booking a table for Valentine’s Day – or indeed justifying why that is not our thing. Instead, in 2021, we can use the 14th February as an excuse to treat ourselves and do something special, whether with our partner or whoever is in our social bubble. In fact, keeping with the bubble rules, we’ll be pouring our fizz. That’s right, the vineyard’s London Brut,followed by our still whites, Bacchus and Ortega. After all, our favourite wines are the ones we make here in Enfield, north London.

But what to eat with your Forty Hall wines? Well, Forty Hall Farm will be harvesting and selling its excellent winter veg including Jerusalem artichokes, purple sprouting broccoli and beetroots. And we’ll be taking inspiration from one of our favourite new cookbooks: Italy World Vegetarian. Written by Christine Smallwood, a food writer and longstanding friend of the vineyard and farm, the title is part of Bloomsbury Publishing’s World Vegetarian series.

Christine suggests the following menu from her book, to pair with our wines: 

Egg Yolk Ravioli with Purple Sprouting Broccoli 

Beetroot Risotto with Crisped Jerusalem Artichokes (recipe below) and a Forty Hall Salad

She explains,

The egg yolk ravioli always impress, and far more than the effort required to make them. Although I serve mine with asparagus spears when available, some steamed purple sprouting broccoli would be a fine seasonal substitute. Or, just serve the ravioli by themselves. My recipe doesn’t involve making your own pasta, so you can assemble them, and put your feet up with a glass of sparkling Brut. Whether you’re bothered about serving red food on February 14th or not, the beetroot risotto is delicious with a salad of Forty Hall’s glorious leaves, dressed with your choice of olive oil alongside. A cake or special pastries from Holtwhites Bakery in Enfield would be perfect for dessert.

Whether your usual preference on February 14th is for dining à deux or with a group of mates, this year, use the moment to make a night in a bit special or to Zoom dine with friends. Order our wine online, buy Christine’s book from your local bookshop and you’ll be all set. Remember to drink responsibly (and discerningly), eat well, stay home in your bubble with our bubbles and be safe.

Here's the risotto recipe. Share your Forty Hall Wine enjoyment with us, tagging @fhvineyard 

Beetroot Risotto with Jerusalem Artichokes
Risotto alle Rape Rosse e Topinambur

Cesare Battisti serves this beautifully coloured dish at his restaurant, Ratanà, in Milan. He’s such an acclaimed risotto maker that he was named the Rice Ambassador for Milan’s Expo 2015. In a region where rice is revered, that is recognition to be taken seriously. 

For the mantecatura (the end of the risotto making when butter, and cheese if appropriate, is beaten into the rice with a wooden spoon to make it creamy), Cesare uses top-quality mountain butter and 24-month matured Lodigiano cheese. Use the best butter you can – although you may wish to use less than suggested here – and note that it does cool down the rice quite rapidly, so be ready to serve straight away. 

Serves 4 

2 large beetroots

about 1 litre vegetable stock

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for frying the Jerusalem artichokes

1 small onion, halved

240g carnaroli rice

2 Jerusalem artichokes, washed and thinly sliced with a mandolin

80g butter

60g vegetarian Italian hard cheese, grated

a handful of cress

Cook the beetroots in lightly salted simmering water for 2 hours, until tender. Leave to cool in the water, then peel them and purée them in a blender. Set aside.

Put your stock in a pan, heat it through and keep it gently simmering on a medium-low heat. Place the olive oil in a large pan over a medium heat and when hot, add the onion and the rice. Cook for about 5 minutes, stirring. Remove the onion when it browns. When the rice becomes translucent, start adding the hot vegetable stock, one small ladleful at a time, stirring the rice continuously as you do so and adding the next ladleful after the previous one has been absorbed. After 10 minutes, add the warmed beetroot puree and continue cooking the rice, adding the stock a ladleful at a time, and stirring until it is tender with the amount of bite that you like. Shortly before it is ready, prepare the artichokes.

In a frying pan, fry the Jerusalem artichoke slices in olive oil to give golden crisps. Set them aside to drain on kitchen paper. 

Remove the rice pan from the heat, stir in the butter, then the cheese. Arrange the risotto on 4 plates and decorate with the artichoke crisps and a few snips of the cress. Serve immediately.



Christine's book is available at all good bookshops and online here 











Buy our fizz from the cellar door at Forty Hall Farm Shop Friday to Sunday 11am to 4pm, via our stockists here or delivered to your home by ordering online her

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