Green Pea + Spinach Risotto
My green pea and spinach risotto was inspired by a good friend who just returned from Italy. It’s a simple and nourishing meal that is purely delicious comfort food and makes you feel great from the inside out. When I make risotto my aim is to focus on using more vegetables rather than a lot of rice and the secret is to keep it simple. This risotto is fabulous any time of year and you can use either frozen or fresh peas, when they are in season. I’ve used a lovely carnaroli rice in this recipe which produces a beautiful, creamy and perfect risotto. I normally double up on the recipe so that I can enjoy it for a meal the next day with a generous grating of Parmesan or topped with a sunny side up organic egg.
What’s great about it:
This makes a perfect pre-workout meal that nourishes your body without weighing you down. Green peas are loaded with antioxidants and anti-inflammatory nutrients. They are a great source of Vitamin A, K, folate, fibre and packed with quality protein for repair as well as iron for energy metabolism. Leafy greens such as spinach are anti-inflammatory to the body and loaded with alkalinising phyto-nutrients to nourish your immune system and promote healing.
1 onion, finely diced
60 g (2 oz/ 1/4 cup) Raw Carnaroli Rice (see notes)
500 ml ( 2 cups/17 1/2 fl oz) good quality vegetable or chicken stock – hot
250 g (9 oz) green peas
2 large handfuls baby spinach leaves
Black pepper to taste
Parmesan and fresh chopped parsley to serve
Sauté onion in 2 teaspoons olive oil over a medium heat until soft.
Add the rice and stir through for 1 minute.
Add 1 cup of stock and stir through the rice then continue stirring until the rice has absorbed some of the stock and thickened.
Add 1 more cup of stock and simmer – stirring over a medium – low heat until the rice is tender but not soft.
Blanch the peas for 1 minute in boiling water then drain.
Add half the peas into a high performance blender or food processor and puree with the spinach until smooth.
Combine the green pea and spinach puree along with the whole green peas to the risotto and stir through.
Heat through for 3 minutes or until the risotto is thick and creamy. your ricotto should be a lovely and soupy not too thick.
Season with black pepper and add a little grated parmesan to stir through the dish.
Serve onto shallow plates and serve topped with extra grated Parmesan and chopped parsley.
Serving suggestions and extras:
Top with pesto in place of chopped parsley.
Top with a lightly fried – sunny side up organic egg before serving.
Top with Meredith Goats feta in place of Parmesan.
Use medium grain brown rice in place of Carnaroli rice.
Carnaroli rice is available from all good grocers. Brown rice or Arborio rice can be used in place of Carnaroli rice.