Friday, December 12, 2008

Pesto Risotto

If you buy the pesto - and there are some good varieties available nowadays - this is just about as easy as an Italian risotto gets. Recipe serves 3-4.


2 tablespoons (30 ml) olive oil
2 spring onions, finely chopped
1 garlic clove, crushed
1 1/2 cups risotto rice
3/4 cup dry white wine
1 3/4 pints/1 litre/4 cups simmering vegetable stock
3 tablespoons (45 ml) pesto
1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese, plus extra, to serve (optional)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper


1. Heat the olive oil in a pan and fry the spring onions and garlic for 4-5 minutes until the spring onions are soft but not browned.
2. Add the rice and cook over a medium heat, stirring all the time, until the grains of rice are coated in oil and the outer part of the grain is translucent and the inner part opaque.
3. Pour in the wine. Cook, stirring, until all of it has been absorbed, then start adding the hot stock, a large spoonful at a time, stirring constantly and waiting until each addition of stock has been absorbed before adding the next.
4. After about 20 minutes, when all the stock has been absorbed and the rice is creamy and tender, stir in the pesto and Parmesan. Taste and adjust seasoning and then cover and rest for 3-4 minutes. Spoon into a bowl and serve, with extra Parmesan, if you like.

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