I’ve just been having a discussion this morning about heating, when you’re freelance and in the house all day do you put the heating on? I usually don’t and bravely suffer the cold until the evening when I need something super hot and cosy to warm me up.
This four greens risotto is the perfect combo of virtuous and comforting, the soft, soupy texture of the trad ricey dish with enough greens to ward off any colds. It’s the kind of dish you can make when you kind of want dirty food or some kind of treat component, but you know you’re in need of vegetables. I do like a good risotto, but they can often be claggy and overly stodgy, here, the addition of greens makes it lighter and adds flavour. I’ve used a mix of savoy cabbage, spinach, courgette and parsley but you could mix it up with shaved asparagus, thyme, petit pois, kale, or whatever greens you have in the cupboard. Just make sure they are really finely chopped so they melt into the rice without too much cooking.
Ingredients (serves 4)
300g risotto rice
250ml white wine
half an onion, diced
butter & oil, s&p
four greens of your choice (make one of them a herb), chopped finely
Slowly fry off the onion in a mixture of butter and vegetable oil, you can leave the lid on for a bit to help the softening. Once the onions are translucent, smash a clove of garlic with a jar or a mug and chop it really finely, add it to the pan with the rice and stir on a low heat until the rice is also translucent. This is wine time! Chuck in the white wine and let it bubble while you stir. Have a jug of hot water with the chicken stock and any other flavourings you want to add (dried herbs, chillis, hot sauce, veg stock and lemon juice all go down a treat) to keep topping up as you do the old stir and simmer for five minutes. Making sure you’ve got a liquidy base and the rice is still uncooked, stir in all your greens and leave to simmer down a bit. Keep checking grains of rice and when they get to that yieldy but chalky perfection turn the heat off, stir in a little more butter (c’mon, everyone needs treats) and grate some parmesan over the top.
Isabelle O'Carroll: I’m a writer, content designer and consultant with 11+ years’ experience across fashion, food and drink and the arts.