Summer garden vegetables are great cooked in many ways and picking up a favourite is basically unfair. Today’s choice however is hardly a surprise – a green garden vegetable risotto. I say hardly a surprise simply because we have often rice on our weekly menu. One day meat, one day rice, one day fish, one day soup, one day salad and one day pasta or potato meal. We are not strict, but we love for our meals to vary.
Today’s delight is a green risotto served with extra grated parmesan and rocket salad. The risotto feels so velvety and light. Sweet green peas, crunchy green asparagus and succulent grilled courgette. I am not mixing all veggies from the start with the risotto but adding them only at the end so they retain their taste and flavour. Adding them at the start will make a tasty mash, if you are up to it, you may always try. But my preference is different. Adding the green peas and the asparagus ten minutes before the rice is ready so they soften and give the risotto a character and taste. As for the courgette, grilling them a little and adding them to the risotto only at the end. A generous portion of grated parmesan and fresh rocket salad to serve and dinner is ready. Taking a spoonful and watching the sunset in the garden, a summer evening at its best!
- 250ml vegetable stock
- 1l water (gradually added)
- 2 dry vegetable bouillon Knorr
- 4 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
- 1 small onion, finely chopped
- 400g rice
- 250 ml dry white wine
- 1 courgette, cut into small cubes
- 2 handfuls of small green asparagus, chopped
- 250g frozen peas
- 40 g parmesan, grated
- fresh parsley
- green rocket salad
- black pepper
1. Heat the extra virgin olive oil in a heavy-based saucepan. Add the cubed courgette and bake until lightly brown. Take out of pan and place in a separate dish for a few minutes.
2. Add the onion in the remaining oil and sweat on a medium heat until softened. Stir in the rice with a wooden spoon and coat each grain with the oil.
3. Add the wine and allow to evaporate, stirring all the time. Add a couple of ladles of hot stock and, stirring continuously, cook until the stock is absorbed.
4. Add more water and repeat. Continue adding water, cooking and stirring in this way for about 15 minutes, until the rice starts to get cooked. Stir in dry vegetable bouillon together with the asparagus and peas. Cook for additional 10 minutes or until the rice is fully cooked. It should be soft on the outside but al dente on the inside. Add the courgette and grated parmesan. Season with salt and ground black pepper.
5. Sprinkle over fresh parsley and serve with additional parmesan and green rocket salad.