No movies for the last few nights; I've been trying to finish the book for my meeting tomorrow night—and I did! So stay tuned for tomorrow's report on The Namesake. But I'm still cooking, although I do keep forgetting to take photos. Anyhow, tonight's side dish comes from Nigella:
Green Pea Risotto
4 Tbsp unsalted butter, divided
1 cup frozen baby peas (thawed or frozen)
4 cups chicken broth, kept hot on low burner
2 Tbsp freshly grated Parmesan cheese, divided, plus more for serving
pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
freshly ground black pepper
drop of oil
2 shallots or 1 small onion, minced
1 cup Arborio or Carnaroli rice
1/2 cup dry white wine or vermouth
chopped fresh parsley (optional)
In a medium saucepan, melt 1 tablespoon of the butter over medium heat. Add the peas and cook, stirring occasionally, for 2 minutes. Remove half the peas and set aside. Add a ladleful of the hot stock to the peas remaining in the pan, cover, and cook gently until soft, about 5 minutes. Transfer the fully cooked peas to a mini-processor or blender along with 1 tablespoon of the Parmesan and 1 tablespoon of the butter. Season with nutmeg and pepper to taste and puree until smooth. Set aside.
Return the saucepan to medium heat and melt 1 tablespoon of the butter along with the drop of oil. Add the shallots or onion and cook, stirring with a wooden spoon, for about 4 minutes. Add the rice and stir until every grain glistens with oniony fat. Pour in the wine or vermouth and let it bubble away and absorb.
Then add a ladleful of the hot stock and stir until this, too, is absorbed. Continue in this vein, patiently, for 10 minutes more. Add the reserved whole peas and then start again, a ladleful of stock at a time. In another 8 minutes or so, the rice should be cooked and the risotto creamy. Taste to see if it needs more cooking. It’s hard to be precise with risotto; sometimes you’ll find that you have stock left over, while other times you’ll need to add hot water from the kettle.
When the risotto is tender and creamy, stir in the pureed pea mixture. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Beat in the remaining 1 tablespoon Parmesan and 1 tablespoon butter. Sprinkle with chopped parsley, if you like, and serve with extra Parmesan at the table.
Oh me, oh my—it is so good! You really do have to keep stirring, so it's not ideal for many dinner-hour scenarios around my house, but tonight it worked out (read: Andy was around to occupy the kids).