Pea and Spinach Risotto with Spring Herbs and Cooking Fraiche

Spring is in the air and I am craving lighter fresher food.  This Pea and Spinach risotto fits the bill perfectly.  Risottos can be a little heavy and dense, however I used Planti Natural cooking fresh which has a delicious soft tang that complements the rich risotto perfectly.  It elevates and lightens the dish, making it the ideal spring lunch or dinner.  I love the vibrant green colour that comes from adding the pea and spinach puree in the final stages, so none of their hue is lost.  The spring herbs add a further spring floral note, I used basil, tarragon, dill and coriander,  but feel free to use whatever fresh herbs come to hand.   Risottos can seem a little daunting to the uninitiated, but they really are very simple.  They do however require your attention, the frequent stirring and ladling of stock may seem like a labour of love, but the results really are worth it.   I finished my risotto with a handful of microgreens and shaved radish, but asparagus spears would also work really well.

This is a paid collaboration with Planti

Pea and Spinach risotto – serves 2 to 3 people

2 tbsp olive oil

1 onion, finely chopped

1 garlic clove, crushed

175g risotto rice 

10 dl/ 1 litre hot vegetable stock

250 g frozen peas

100 g fresh baby spinach

a good handful of your favourite fresh spring herbs (I used basil, tarragon, coriander and dill)

4 tbsp Planti Natural Cooking fraiche

30g vegan parmesan

Heat the olive oil in a large, heavy-based saucepan.  Add the onion and sweat for 10 mins, until soft. 

Meanwhile, add 150 ml of stock, 200 g of  peas, the spinach and your herbs to a blender and blend until smooth and vibrant green, set to one side

Add the garlic to the onions and fry for 1 minute, then pour in the rice and cook for a further 2 minutes, stirring continuously.

Add 3 dl/ 300 ml of stock and allow to simmer, stirring regularly, until absorbed.  Continue the process, adding stock a ladleful at a time, until the rice is al dente ( It should take around 30 mins, you may not require all the stock).  The rice needs to be cooked, but the risotto shouldn’t be too wet as you will still add the pea/ herb puree.    Stir through the parmesan, the pea/ herb puree the remaining frozen peas and the cooking fraiche.  

Season to taste and spoon into bowls.

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