Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Risotto with Bacon, Baby Zucchini and Peppers

This would make the perfect Italian dish to come home to after an early show at the theater. Creamy risotto topped with vegetables and crisp bacon is irresistible and easy to make. Recipe serves 4.


2 tablespoons olive oil
4 ounces (125 g) streaky bacon, rind removed, cut into thick strips
1 3/4 cups risotto rice
5 cups hot vegetable or chicken stock
2 tablespoons single cream
3 tablespoons dry sherry
2/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
2/3 cup chopped fresh parsley
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
For the Vegetables:
1 small red pepper, seeded
1 small green pepper, seeded
2 tablespoons butter
3 ounces (90 g) horse mushrooms, sliced
8 ounces (250 g) baby zucchini, halved
1 onion, halved and sliced
1 garlic clove, crushed


1. Heat half the oil in a frying pan. Add the bacon and heat gently until the fat runs. Increase the heat and fry until crisp, then drain on kitchen paper and set aside.
2. Heat the remaining oil in a heavy-based saucepan. Add the rice, stir to coat the grains, then spoon in a little of the hot stock. Stir until it has been absorbed. Gradually add the rest of the stock, stirring constantly.
3. Cut the peppers into chunks. Melt the butter in a separate pan and fry the peppers, mushrooms, zucchini, onion and garlic until the onion is just tender. Season well, then stir in the bacon.
4. When all the stock has been absorbed by the rice, stir in the cream, sherry, Parmesan cheese, parsley and seasoning. Spoon the risotto on to individual plates and top each portion with fried vegetables and bacon. Serve immediately.

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