Food and drink

Pea and bacon risotto

This is the second post I’ve written about risotto. The mushroom risotto I posted before was fantastic and I wanted to do another one to show how easy it is to take the standard risotto technique and adapt it for different flavours.

I’ve always got half packets of bacon in the freezer and almost always have a packet of frozen peas as well so this was a simple, quick and cheap meal that will easily feed four people or two over a few days (I’ve just finished the leftovers for lunch as I type this).

Essentially it follows exactly the same process as before – soften the onions and garlic, coat the rice in the oil, add the wine then stir in the stock a splash at a time for half an hour. The only difference is that we crisp up the bacon lardons right at the start and add frozen peas near the end. Oh and the stock is chicken this time round.

I think I actually preferred this to the mushroom risotto. I guess everything tastes better with bacon.

Obviously many people might also like to add mint to this risotto but I’m not a fan of mint in cooking (oh how annoyed I get when I see a lovely sounding lamb dish on the menu only to see it’s served with mint) so I didn’t include it here.

Serves 4

1 onion – finely chopped
2 cloves garlic – minced
1 litre chicken stock
Half a pack of streaky bacon – cut into lardons
350g arborrio rice
100g frozen peas
25g butter
Fresh parmesan
A glass of white wine
Handful of chopped parsley

Fry the bacon with a large glug of olive oil in a large pan until it’s nice and crispy.
Remove half of the bacon and leave to one side on a piece of kitchen paper.
Lower the heat and add the onions to gently soften.
Once the onions are soft add the garlic and continue cooking for a further minute.
Add the rice and stir to coat with the oil.
Deglaze with the wine and stir until it’s been soaked up by the rice.
Pour in a large splash of stock (about 150ml) and stir it slowly.
Once the rice has soaked up all the liquid add another 150ml and keep repeating until there’s only about 300ml left and the rice is almost cooked (about 25 minutes cooking time).
Add the peas and the remainder of the stock and stir for a few more minutes until the rice is cooked (soft, with a little bit of bite, but not crunchy).
Stir in the butter and some grated parmesan.
Season and add the parsley then serve with the bacon you removed earlier sprinkled on top.

3 thoughts on “Pea and bacon risotto”

  1. Very similar to a pea and ham risotto I make. The sweet and the salty is always a good match. Although I’m sure there are some exceptions. Salted custard springs to mind. . . .

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