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Broad Bean, Lemon and Thyme Risotto



from Jane's Cook Book



If possible, I like to make dishes with seasonal produce and July is a month when all the fresh vegetables are gorgeous.  Broad beans are very tasty.  I pod them because they are lovely and soft inside but you may feel that this procedure is not worth the fuss and then you can put them in whole.  Risotto is very easy and convenient because it uses mostly store cupboard ingredients.


Serves 2 


1 onion, finely chopped 

knob of butter 

2 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed 

750ml vegetable or chicken stock 

150g risotto rice such as arborio 

1 glass dry white wine 

250g broad beans, blanched and podded 

grated zest of 2 lemons and juice of 1 

2tbsp thyme leaves 

2tbsp roughly chopped parsley 

75g fresh Parmesan, grated 


1 Gently fry the onion in a little butter until soft but not browned. Add the garlic and cook for a minute. Bring the stock to the boil in a separate pan & leave on a gentle simmer. 


2 Add the rice to the onion with a pinch of salt, stir well then add the white wine. Bring to the boil, simmer & add the hot stock, a ladleful at a time, adding more once the first batch has been absorbed. You must keep stirring with a wooden spoon.  It will take around 20 minutes to become creamy but it is good to retain a bit of bite. 


3 Add the broad beans, lemon zest and juice, thyme and parsley. Stir well. Leave the rice to stand for 2 to 3 minutes with a knob of butter. Finally, add the Parmesan and serve straight away.


In other months, when the season for fresh beans is over, frozen beans or peas make a suitable replacement.