February 15, 2009

Pea and Bacon Risotto

Gourmet, January 2009

We have developed a love for risotto, ordering it whenever we get the chance. So I was delighted to find that this one was as creamy and delicious as it sounded-- we liked it just as much as the one other risotto I've made, a butternut squash one. It made dinner for two, with one serving left over for lunch the next day (and since I have far poorer lunch options at my place of work, the leftovers were mine!).

3 1/2 C reduced-sodium chicken broth
1 C water
2 bacon slices, chopped
2 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
2/3 C Arborio rice
2/3 C frozen peas
1/4 C grated parmesan
2 T unsalted butter
1/2 t lemon zest
1/2 t lemon juice

Bring broth and water to a simmer in a small saucepan.

Cook bacon in a small heavy saucepan over medium-low heat, stirring, until crisp. Transfer with a slotted spoon to a paper towl to drain.

Add garlic to bacon fat in pan and cook, stirring occasionally, until pale golden, about 1 minute. Add rice, stirring to coat.

Add about 1/4 cup hot broth mixture and simmer briskly, stirring constantly, until broth is absorbed. Continue simmering and adding hot broth mixture, about 1/4 cup at a time, stirring frequently and letting each addition be absorbed before adding the next, until rice is just tender and creamy-looking but still al dente. (Reserve leftover broth mixture.)

Add peas and cook, stirring occasionally, 2 minutes.

Stir in cheese, butter, zest, and juice. Thin risotto with some of reserved broth mixture if desired and season with salt and pepper. Top with bacon.

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