Recipe: Risi E Bisi
Serves 4 to 6
2 tablespoons butter
1 medium onion, diced
1 cup arborio or carnaroli rice
Salt and pepper
6 cups hot chicken broth
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 ounces pancetta, diced
6 scallions, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
12 fresh sage leaves
8 ounces shucked English peas, about 2 cups
4 ounces pea tendrils or shoots (or use baby spinach)
2 tablespoons chopped parsley
½ teaspoon lemon zest
2 ounces grated Parmesan
1. Melt butter in a heavy, wide saucepan over medium high heat. Add onion and cook until softened, about five minutes.
2. Stir in rice and season with salt and pepper. Continue cooking for two minutes. Add 2 cups chicken broth and bring to a brisk simmer. Cook six minutes, stirring occasionally as broth is absorbed. Add 2 more cups broth and cook for another six minutes, until rice is cooked through, but firm.
3. Meanwhile, heat olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add pancetta and cook 2 minutes without browning. Add scallions, stir to coat and cook a minute. Add garlic, sage leaves and peas. Season generously with salt and pepper. Add ½ cup broth and simmer until peas are done, about two minutes. Add pea tendrils and cook until just wilted, about a minute.
4. Add pea mixture to rice mixture and gently stir together. Add enough broth to keep rice a bit soupy. Check seasoning. Stir in parsley, lemon zest and Parmesan and serve immediately.
— David Tanis, The New York Times