I’m very happy because my first broad beans are ready and I am a big fan of their unique texture and flavour. They are the star of the show in this dish along with the sweet, slow-cooked leeks running through this risotto. This indulgent, creamy risotto eats like comfort food but is balanced wonderfully by the freshness of the veggies. Good risotto is a matter of patience and butter:
- Add the stock a little bit at a time and allow it to absorb into the rice before adding more. You’ll get a better texture by taking your time.
- Once the rice is cooked add butter and grated parmesan to make the dish extra tasty and smooth.
Serves 2 Adults
1/2 head of garlic
200g risotto rice
800ml vegetable stock
2 tbsp white wine vinegar (or 125ml white wine)
3 medium sized carrots
200g shelled broad beans (out of their pods)
2 rosemary sprigs
40g pea shoots
- Trim and wash the leeks then chop 250g of leek rounds. Peel and finely chop the garlic. Melt 50g of butter in a large skillet on a medium heat then add the leeks and garlic and grind over with salt.
- Soften the leeks for a couple of minutes then scatter over the rice and stir. Add the vinegar (or white wine) and allow to cook for 2 minutes.
- Pour the stock into a small saucepan and put on a low heat and once it’s hot gradually add the stock (a ladle at a time) and stir regularly.
- Repeat until all the stock has been absorbed and the rice is tender then add another 50g of butter, grate over the parmesan and grind over a little black pepper. Keep the risotto warm on a low heat until the veggies are ready.
- Peel the carrots and cut into long batons. Remove the broad beans from their pods then bring a saucepan of salted water to the boil and add the beans. Boil for 4 minutes then lift the beans out of the water with a slotted spoon and plunge into a bowl of ice water to stop the cooking and retain the colour.
- Keep the water boiling, add the carrot batons, cook for 8 minutes until tender then drain.
- Squeeze the broad bean skins so that the bright green jewels pop out then discard the skins.
- Finely slice the radishes and discard the tops. Put the carrots, broad beans and rosemary in a frying pan along with 50g of butter and cook for 3 minutes on a medium heat.
- Add the radish slices and cook for another 2 minutes and toss to ensure all the veggies are coated in the rosemary scented butter.
- Turn off the heat and add the pea shoots then stir to combine. Dish up the risotto into bowls then top with the veggies and some herb flowers. A soft boiled egg is a great addition if you want the protein.