Pea and Mint Spelt Risotto
A few weeks ago I came across a pea and mint risotto in a restaurant called The Brasserie which I reviewed on my Kitchen Journeys blog. http://kitchenjourneys.net/2014/07/the-brasserie-at-the-tower-hotel/
I thought I would try to create something similarly fresh for summer but using a healthier grain than Arborio rice. Not that I don’t like this rice very much, but it is a refined rice that we should avoid for lowering cholesterol purposes. So I have substituted it with Spelt which I am increasingly using in my kitchen. I have made a few spelt risottos now over the past few months with good results.
For 4 people:
1 dessertspoon olive oil
1 onion, chopped
1litre vegetable stock – I use Marigold bouillon
250g frozen peas
4 large sprigs mint
Parmesan cheese (optional)
Start by sauteing the chopped onion in the olive oil. Let it cook slowly with a lid on so that you don’t need to add more oil while the onion softens.
Add the spelt and stir well to combine. Add half the stock and stir in and then slowly add the rest. Leave to simmer, covered, until tender but retaining a bite. You may need to add a bit more stock if it is looking dry before the spelt is cooked.
Cook the peas in boiling water into which you have added the mint sprigs. When the peas are ready, remove them and the mint with a slotted spoon and keep the water in which they were boiled.
Pull the mint leaves off their stalks and puree along with the peas in a food processor.
Add the pea mixture to the cooked spelt and stir well to combine.
Add a bit of the cooking liquid you have set aside to loosen up the risotto a little if needed.
Add a few grinds of black pepper and a few handfuls of grated parmesan.