Easi Risi E Bisi

Having procured 250g of freshly shucked peas from the markets I decided we should have a pea risotto for lunch. I found this recipe in Linda Doeser’s World Food ITALY, the Food and the Lifestyle, but I have changed it a little – I have a thing for Parmesan so I melt a little into the rice as well

We had everything we needed for this recipe in the pantry and fridge, except the shallots and fresh peas (although we’ve a few packs of frozen peas, so we could have coped quite well). It’s an easy meal to make and takes a shave over 30 minutes, during which you get to empty the rest of the wine bottle down your throat.

You will need:

Chicken stock, 1 litre
60g butter
40g butter
Shallots, 3, chopped finely
Pancetta (normal bacon does just fine), rindless, diced
Rice, arborio, 300g
Dry white wine, 150ml
Peas, 250g (if frozen, make sure they’re thawed)
Salt and pepper to taste
Parmesan, 50gms, grated, plus some shavings to garnish

STEP ONE: Heat the stock in a pan and let simmer. Melt 60g of butter in another large pan, then add shallots and bacon. Cook over a low heat for 5 minutes, until the shallots are softened.

STEP TWO: Pour in the rice, stirring for a couple of minutes until well coated. Add the wine, again stirring constantly. When the wine has almost completely been soaked up by the rice start adding the warm stock a little at a time, all the time stirring. Ten minutes in, add the peas, then continue with the rest of the stock until all in and absorbed.

STEP THREE: Now add the 50g of Parmesan and then the remaining 40g of butter. Season with salt and pepper, plate up and top with Parmesan shavings.

We can’t have this dish when guests are over because it looks a bit uncouth when Tracey starts licking her bowl.

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