Let's Cook with Meg and Ted

Risi e bisi

This is a speciality of Venice. Depending on which book you read, it may be a risotto or a soup. This is the risotto version. For soup, perform the same first step, extending the pea cooking time to 8-10 minutes at low heat, then add all the remaining stock and the rice at once and cook for 13-14 mintues or until rice is cooked.

1 kg sweet fresh peas in the pod
1 onion or 6 shallots, peeled and chopped
2 cloves of garlic, peeled and finely chopped
50 g butter
2 tablespoons olive oil
a handful of fresh flat-leaf parsley, leaves chopped
1.5-2 litres of vegetable stock
350 g arborio or vialone nano rice
1 glass dry white wine
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 bunch fresh mint, leaves chopped
50 g parmesan, grated

Shell and rinse the peas. Fry the onion and garlic in the butter and oil until soft, then stir in the peas and parsley and just enough hot stock to barely cover the ingredients. Simmer for 2 minutes.

Add the rice and wine, and stir for one minute. Now add the hot stock ladleful by ladleful, stirring well and waiting until the stock is absorbed between each addition. Continue for 18-20 minutes or until the rice is creamy but slightly firm.

Stir in the mint and parmesan and season well with salt and pepper. Remove from heat and cover for one minute, then serve on warmed plates with extra parmesan if desired.

Serves 4.

July 2000

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