Just before going on holiday I picked my first crop of mangetout from my garden. It was only a small bowl full but even so I was pleased that I would be able to eat something that I had grown myself.
I decided I wanted to cook them as part of a dish where they would really shine instead of just cooking them and serving them as a side to meat or fish.Risotto came to mind and I thought I would combine them with some smoked salmon. The result was a dish that was both delicious and colourful. The mangetout added a crunchy texture and complemented the salmon well.
Smoked salmon and mangetout risotto
small onion, peeled and thinly diced
stick of celery, thinly diced (optional)
1 garlic glove, peeled and thinly chopped
150-200g Arborio rice
Good splash of dry white wine
Approximately 600ml Chicken stock
Zest and juice of half a lemon
Good handful of fresh mangetout sliced into pieces roughly 1-2cm thick
3 Smoked salmon slices cut into small strips
Salt and pepper
- Heat the stock in a small saucepan.
- Heat a good splash of olive oil in a large frying pan over a medium heat. Once hot add the onion and celery and sweat (with the lid on), stirring occasionally until soft but not brown (5-10 mins).
- Add the garlic and lemon zest and cook for a few minutes, again stirring frequently.
- Add the rice and turn up the heat. Stir to coat the rice (from here on you need to stir much more frequently to stop the rice sticking or burning and also to release the starch to make it deliciously creamy).
- You should notice the rice become translucent and at this point you need to add the wine and continue to stir.
- Once the wine has been absorbed by the rice, add the first ladle of stock and turn the heat back down to medium. Keep stirring.
- Once this ladle of stock has been fully absorbed by the rice, add another ladle, stir and repeat until the rice is cooked.
- Add the mangetout strips to the pan after a couple of ladles of stock have been absorbed, stir well. You can add the mangetout later if you like them really crunchy or sooner if you like them well cooked.
- Once the rice is cooked, remove from the heat, stir in the lemon juice and smoked salmon, season to taste.