black garlic, potato and lemon risotto, topped with whipped goats cheese and chives

OK – I’ll have to come clean with this one. This idea is definitely a rip off from a local restaurant. I saw it on their menu some time ago, and I kept thinking about making it. I recently bought a bulb of black garlic so couldn’t resist giving it a whirl!


Black garlic has such a unique flavour. It’s sweet, with flavours of balsamic and liquorice, but ultimately still with an underlying garlic taste. It would be hard to substitute in this dish if you were unable to get your hands on it (£1.50 at Sainsbury’s!), but you could always try using garlic cloves that have been roasted in balsamic vinegar.

Potato must sound like a very strange ingredient for a risotto. However, it adds texture and substance, whilst not detracting from the other strong flavours already contending with one another – black garlic, lemon, goats cheese.

Garnish with a couple of fried potatoes to add a crispy element!



2 x large potatoes – peeled, cubed and par-boiled (if you don’t par-boil them first, they’ll be far too hard)

30g butter

1 tbsp olive oil, plus a little extra for frying if you fancy adding a fried potato garnish

300g risotto rice (carnaroli or arborio)

1 x shallot, chopped

3 x black garlic cloves, finely chopped

150ml dry white wine

1.2l hot chicken stock

1/2 lemon, juice only

125g goats cheese (soft and creamy, not hard)

splash of semi skimmed milk

25g freshly grated parmesan

small handful of fresh chives, chopped

season to taste

serves 4


  1. heat the butter and olive oil in a wideset pan over a medium heat. add the shallot and garlic, and gently soften.
  2. add the risotto rice to the pan and stir well, ensuring all grains are coated in the melted butter mixture. once they turn translucent, pour in the white wine and stir well. it should sizzle immediately and quickly soak into the rice.
  3. add the potatoes to the pan (keep a few cubes aside to fry for garnish).
  4. pour in the chicken stock a ladleful at a time, continuously stirring. this process should take around 20 mins.
  5. while the risotto is cooking, quickly make your whipped goats cheese. tip the cheese in to a large bowl, and use an electric whisk to soften it. it should break up to into piece but not be too smooth. add a splash of milk, and whisk again. now it should take on the form of a soft whipped cheese.
  6. once the rice is al dente (cooked thoroughly but with some bite!), squeeze in the lemon juice. stir in the parmesan and approx 75% of the goats cheese, and season to taste.
  7. quickly heat a splash of oil in a separate small frying pan on a medium heat, and fry your leftover potato cubes until crispy approx 3 mins).
  8. to serve,  i top with the remaining whipped goats cheese, the crispy fried potatoes and the fresh chives. delicious!

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