Minted Pea and Leek Risotto with Rocket and Cashew Pesto

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In the supermarket today, the only decent produce was some huge leeks. I have never made a proper risotto before with Arborio rice. It surpassed my expectations and was quite filling. I picked the rocket and fresh mint from the school garden this afternoon.

If you do not want to use wine then you can replace all of the liquid with vegetable stock.
This is another recipe where the magic, ground nuts can be used to enrich a dish without the need for cheese.You could also toast some pine nuts to sprinkle on top.

Serves 4
Preparation and cooking time 50 minutes

Ingredients
The Risotto
125g of Arborio risotto rice
A very large leek finely sliced
A tablespoon of olive oil
A clove of garlic crushed to a paste
100g of defrosted frozen or fresh baby peas
A handful of finely chopped fresh mint
1 and a half tablespoons of ground almonds
200 ml of water
150ml of white wine
Salt and pepper to taste

The Pesto
3 large handfuls of rocket
A handful of toasted cashews (unsalted)
2-3 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
A clove of garlic
Salt and pepper to taste

The Risotto
Gently sweat the leeks and the garlic in the olive oil until they are very soft. Add the rice and a mixed cupful of wine and water. Stir and keep stirring until the liquid is absorbed. Keep adding the liquid a cupful at a time and stirring until the rice is just soft. Add the peas and mint and stir. Season to taste and the stir through the ground almonds.

The Pesto
Place all of the ingredients except the oil in a food processor and blitz until smooth. Drizzle in the olive oil until the pesto binds and forms a smooth paste. Season to taste.

Serve the risotto with a spoonful of the pesto on top.

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One thought on “Minted Pea and Leek Risotto with Rocket and Cashew Pesto

  1. Bianca August 20, 2013 / 1:40 am

    yum just say the word pesto and i am on board!

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