Recipes | Broccoli, bacon and pea risotto


Now, you might think from the title ‘hmm that sounds like an odd combination’, and then you might think ‘isn’t it to supposed to be pea and ham?’, and then you may look at the photo and think ‘that doesn’t look much like broccoli, bacon and pea’… and then you might think ‘hang on, that doesn’t even look like risotto’, and you’d probably be right on all counts!
Firstly, yes it is an odd combination, and secondly yes I did initially find a recipe for pea and ham. However, I had bacon left over in my fridge that needed using up. Plus a head of broccoli that was on the turn. So I found another recipe for cheese and broccoli risotto, and mashed the two together!
Finally, you’d be right in thinking at first glance that the dish doesn’t even look like risotto. Well, that’s because I got a bit carried away with the sprinkling of kale. At the time I was suffering from day two of a hangover from hell. I wanted vegetables, vitamins and a general heath kick right away!
All that being said, I have to say, I’m pretty damn please with how well this random concoction of ingredients turned out. It tasted really good and was super easy to make. I love it when you stumble upon a dish like this, or make something without really thinking, just hoping it will turn out okay and it does!

Ingredients (serves 2)
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
4 bacon strips, chopped
1/2 broccoli head, cut into small pieces
150g risotto rice
100ml white wine
700ml vegetable stock
1/2 cup frozen peas
1 lemon
75g parmesan (but I used finely grated cheddar)
Knob of butter
Salt and pepper to season


1. Heat a tablespoon of oil in a large pan and fry the bacon quickly on a medium heat. Remove and place to one side. Add the knob of butter, and sauté the onion until slightly browned. Add the garlic and cook for a further minute.
2. Add the broccoli and rice and stir thoroughly. The rice should toast slightly and turn a little translucent. Pour over the wine, bring to the boil and simmer until absorbed.
3. Begin to add the stock a little at a time and stir well. As the stock begins to disappear add a little more. Continue to do this until all of the stock has been absorbed (or near enough). You don’t necessarily need to stir it continuously as some recipes would make you believe. However you do need to keep checking it to make sure the stock doesn’t disappear completely and the mixture stick to the bottom of the pan.
4. Stir through the peas, add the bacon and the cheese. Add a touch of zest from the lemon and then squeeze all of the juice from the lemon in. Continue to cook for a further couple of minutes until the peas are cooked.
5. For extra greenery, add a healthy does of kale to the dish! 😉 Season with salt and pepper.

Homemade risotto

October 26, 2016