Risotto always is a good choice. Everyone loves it. And the best part about it (besides it being ultra delicious); it is so versatile! You can make it with anything and everything, try different combos, make it seasonal and make it as you like it! Just like we’re doing it with this one. To make it fresher and more summery, we are throwing in some greens & herbs and just taking it next level!
What is special about this dish?
The combination! Mint and pea is a combo that we (unfortunately) do not find very often. Yet, it is so ultra tasty! The peas add a buttery, soft taste to the risotto and the mint accounts for a fresh taste, which you would usually not expect in risotto, but is really, really good. If you want some more risotto recipes, you can check out the wild garlic risotto or the creamy, green vegan risotto!
A little risotto story
Actually, it is quite surprising that I still like risotto as of today since I have a little history with it. As a kid (and still now), when eating out, I’ve always loved trying every single dish on the table. So when we went out to eat, I’d pick up my fork and walk around the table to try the dish my brother ordered, my mom had and my dad ate. I simply loved exploring new flavours.
So once during our holidays in Italy we went out to eat. I was very little, something like 6 or 7 years, and ordered a risotto. My parents‘ and my brother’s dish had arrived before mine did, so I took my fork and walked around the table. Not surprisingly, I could then not finish my risotto, because I have already had quite a bunch of food before I even started eating mine.
My dad, teased me and said (it was well obvious that it was a joke) I should finish or I can never try his meal before mine again. So I, as a little defiant and stubborn kid, knew it was a joke but because I was so stubborn I finished it anyways. My mom and my brother had a lot of fun watching me and my dad and I was so full afterwards that I couldn’t have even looked at more food. Well, anyways, the chef then came out of the kitchen and asked everyone how they liked the meal. You can probably imagine how my family bursted into laughter when he came to ask me.
Although this was (a teeny tiny bit) unpleasant for me, I did not learn my lesson (because I did not want to) and up to this day try everyone else’s dishes.
And, despite all of this, I still love risotto.
Is risotto healthy?
Back to the more important things. While risotto is incredibly nourishing for the soul and the happiness, it is not quite as nourishing for our bodies. Why? In order for it to taste this delicious, it is packed with many saturated fats from the cheese and butter, which are not so great for us. Nevertheless, there are a few things we can change to make it more delicious.
For example, instead of using butter only, we are using a mix of cream cheese and butter. This makes it a bit lighter in terms of fats. Then also, we are adding some peas, for extra fibre and vitamins and mint for extra nutrients. Justa. few swaps, and they do make a difference.
How to make this dish?
Risotto making really is not difficult but it is a workout. It takes some time and effort because you constantly need to stir. We start by frying the finely chopped onions in some olive oil. This adds a really delicious flavour to the entire dish. Then, we add the rice and fry it too before we deglaze it with some white wine. Now the fun part starts. A scoop at a time, we are adding some vegetable broth and letting it simmer (while stirring) until the rice has absorbed it. Then we add another scoop, and another, and so on until the rice is ready to eat. Shortly before that, we’ll add the peas.
As soon as the rice is done and the liquid is absorbed (it really should be very well absorbed because otherwise it’ll be too runny), we can stir in the chopped mint, butter, cream cheese and parmesan. And that already is it! If you want, you could add something on top like grilled zucchini, prawns or anything else, or just enjoy it as is!
This, as the name already suggests, is a real family favourite. And really, you can barely go wrong with it. Very easy to make, and very, very delicious!
Family Favourite, Easy, Pea(sy) & Mint Risotto
Not your average risotto. Much more fun, a bit healthier and SO much flavour. The combination of peas and mint is just outrageous and perfect for spring and summer. An absolute family favourite!
What you will need
- 1,5 l vegetable broth
- 320 g risotto rice
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 white onion
- a splash white wine
- 400 g peas
- 1 handful mint
- 25 g butter
- 45 g cream cheese
- 80 g parmesan cheese
Finely dice the onion. Heat up the oil and sautée the onion in it until it is glassy. Add the rice and gently stir through until everything is combined and slightly covered with the oil. Deglaze it with the splash of white wine after about a minute. Reduce the heat to medium-high and add a scoop of the vegetable broth. Constantly stir everything until the vegetable broth has fully been absorbed by the rice, then add the next scoop.
Repeat until the rice is cooked through, for about 15-20 minutes.
In the meantime grate the parmesan, measure out the other ingredients and finely chop the mint.
Once the rice is almost done cooking (after about 20 minutes), add in the peas. When done, take it off the heat and stir in cheeses, butter and mint.
Once everything is well combined, plate it and garnish with some extra parmesan cheese and mint.
Have fun making (and especially eating) it!
Katie // Une Petite Cuisinière
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