Saturday, September 1

Hell's Kitchen Inspired Pea Risotto

I am admittedly a Gordon Ramsey fan. I quite enjoy watching him tell people his "honest" opinion of their cooking abilities. Having been in a corporate kitchen before, I can honestly tell you, it isn't that far off from the reality of it. Being a cook isn't really that glamorous, it takes a strong person to do it everyday. Besides his honest approach in the kitchen, he does create some of the best dishes. If you watch the show you will see contestants constantly making risotto, Green risotto to be exact.
His recipe is available in a Hell's kitchen cookbook, but I figured it out one day. I did make a change to mine, his calls for the use of Fava beans, but, I am not a fan of Fava beans so I used English peas. I am also sure his probably uses something fancier than basic vegetable stock. But as I said this is inspired by his, not his recipe. I hope you enjoy it, it is really good!

Serves 4-6
Full time: 30 minutes
You will need:

8 oz. shelled English peas
1 shallot, finely chopped
4 1/2 cups vegetable stock
1 1/2 cups arborio rice
1/2 cup shaved Parmesan
1/2 cup white wine
2 tbsp butter
2 tbsp olive oil
1/2 tbsp basil
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground black pepper

*optional: 2 sautéed asparagus per plate for garnish (seen on show)

Let us begin:

In a stock pot bring vegetable stock to a boil and then lower heat to medium. You need to keep the stock hot but not boiling. Stir in basil, salt, and pepper

To get pea puree ready. Bring water to a rolling boil and add the peas in.

Cook for 3 minutes, remove peas and drain. Shock them with cold water to stop them from cooking. You can either use an ice bath or run them under cold water for a few minutes.
Separate out about 1/4 of the peas and set them aside for later.

Place the remaining peas into a food processor, add 1 tbsp olive oil, and 1/2 stock. Puree until smooth.

In a deep saute pan melt 1 tbsp butter with olive oil

Add in shallot and cook over medium heat until the shallot goes translucent, 5-8 minutes
Add in rice and move around with spoon to lightly toast but not brown, this will give it a nice nutty flavor and aroma.
After about 2 minutes add in the white wine and stir until full absorbed, it will absorb fast so don't walk away
This next step you will repeat over and over until all you stock is gone. Put 1 ladle of stock into the center of risotto pan and stir until mostly absorbed.

Remember the more you add the longer it will take to absorb, do time will vary ladle to ladle. In the beginning it is only a minute or two, towards the end it could take four or five.

The important thing is to watch for a small amount of moisture in the pan and then add more.

Risotto will turn very sticky and glutinous so don't let it absorb 100% before adding next ladle.
Once you are sure the rice has completely cooked through, it is time to add in the pea puree.

Add remaining butter and pea puree into the saute pan.

Cook for 2-3 minutes, stirring until the pea puree has fully incorporated.

Toss in the reserved peas and cook 2 minutes, until peas are hot. Check for seasoning, this is where you need to add salt and pepper if needed.

Remove from heat and serve immediately, top with shaved Parmesan. Enjoy!