Risotto with green veg., bacon & parsley

Time.  Risotto requires a little time and patience not a lot of time or skill. Extremely budget friendly I estimate that I cooked for 8 of us at well under 20 euro – I doubled the recipe given here so you could cook this for four at around 10 euro.  Budget friendly, healthy, cooked from scratch, and given time and patience it is easy too.
Risotto in bowl close up
Risotto on platter

I think we’re all ready to park Christmas and the holidays and move on into the New Year.  The holiday period was a fabulous time to catch up with family and relax but the first week back is very hard.  I know that at the end of my first week I’m feeling tired and cranky – it’s been hard to get up early and I’m still not adjusted enough to get to bed a bit earlier too.  There’s also still too many sweets and biscuits hanging around to be embarking on any kind of health kick and with our incessant rain of late the least one can have is a bit of comfort in a warm drink with a sweet treat.  We’re not about to throw them out! It’s dark, it’s dreary and even though these pictures were taken at around 2pm today natural light was very sadly lacking.  The risotto was perfect for a day like today though, warming, comforting and indulgent I do hope you get to try it out.
Risotto in bowl
Risotto close up

Risotto with Green Veg., Bacon & Parsley
Serves 4.

You will need:
1 onion
2 cloves garlic
2 tbsp rapeseed oil
225g Arborio risotto rice
1 courgette
1 bunch asparagus
1 bunch fine green beans
950ml hot vegetable stock
125g bacon lardons or pancetta pieces
2 tbsp grated parmesan
2 tbsp chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
Method:
Peel and finely chop the onion and garlic.
Heat 1 tbsp olive oil in a large frying pan over a medium heat.
Add the arborio rice , stir using a wooden spoon and cook for a couple of minutes then add the onion and garlic stir and cook for another couple of minutes.  You want them to begin to soften and not brown.
Meanwhile heat the other tbsp oil in another frying pan and cook courgette slices on both sides for a couple of minutes until golden but still firm – remove to a dish lined with paper towel to absorb excess oil.
While the courgette cooks add 2 ladles of stock to the risotto rice, stir well and leave until absorbed then add a further 2 ladles, stir and leave a couple of mins, continue in this manner until all stock has been added and the rice is beautifully plumped up, soft and creamy looking.
Meanwhile cook the asparagus in boiling water for 3-4 minutes and the same with the green beans – drain and remove to rest with the courgette until the risotto rice has all been cooked.
Cook the bacon lardons in the pan used to cook the courgette.
Once the risotto has had all stock added stir in the parmesan and parsley then add the cooked vegetables, bacon lardons and serve.
Enjoy!
‘Til next time, Sheila

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