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pea risotto


What a week! Episode One went out last Wednesday and it has been manic since. I didn’t look at my phone at all during broadcast, and afterwards I was worried it would melt! Thank you everyone for your kind messages, tweets, emails and general loveliness. I am sorry it is taking me an age to get back to everyone but I do really appreciate it. I have a few posts to share with you so I will kick off with a favourite – pea risotto. I recently got a juicer, one of many failed attempts to compensate for a summer of cake. It has been suprisingly useful for far more than clean eating though. By juicing the pea shells you are getting as much goodness from the peas as possible and avoiding too much waste. A very handy gadget (it makes great cocktails too!) that cost me only £26. I know we live in a world of ridiculous kitchen gadgets e.g. the egg separator and cucumber corer – I know, me too!! – but for a foodie friend it is an affordable and amazingly useful gift. Peas are in season too and currently in abundance in our garden thanks to dad so make the most of them now. Nothing beats peas in a pod.

Notes: Of course if you don’t have a juicer simply blitz the peas for five minutes or until finely pulped. Sieve the juice so you get a smooth bright green liquid. You can also omit this stage completely and simply add a little more liquid at the end. It is important to add the peas right at the last minute so they remain as fresh as possible. You can also add broad beans, asparagus or spring onions as extra greens.

FAS_2877FAS_5671FAS_2869FAS_5648FAS_5668PEA RISOTTO

1 large shallot or white onion

2 cloves of garlic

a knob of butter

2 tbsp olive oil

250g risotto rice

100ml white wine

350-500ml vegetable stock

salt and pepper

150g fresh shelled peas

450g fresh unshelled peas

1 bunch of fresh mint

50g parmesan (optional)

Start by finely slicing the onion and garlic. Heat the butter and oil in a pan then add the onion and garlic. Sweat gently until translucent before adding the rice. Whack up the heat and cook for 2-3 minutes slightly frying the rice. Add the wine and cook for a further five minutes to allow the alcohol to evaporate. Once the liquid almost dries up begin adding the stock ladle at a time, stirring regularly. Cook for 20-25 minutes on a medium heat continuously adding the stock. If you run out of stock before the rice cooks add some boiling water. You want it to remain slightly al dente as you will be adding further liquid at the end. Juice the whole unshelled peas or blitz as described above. Once you have a bright green juice pour a little at the time into the rice, as well as adding the shelled peas and mint. Return to the heat for no more than a two minutes (he juice will loose its fresh taste and bright colour otherwise). Add a little more juice if required. Serve immediately with some parmesan and a little black pepper.

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