Recipe: Mr Pickles, Hamilton | Photography: Ashlee de Caires

For the risotto:

100g Arborio rice (use top quality like Carnroli or Nano)
¼ cup white onion, finely diced
4 tsp olive oil
⅓ cup white wine
1 cup blanched fresh garden peas or frozen
¼ cup blanched fresh garden peas, pureed or frozen
1½ cups vegetable stock
salt and pepper to taste
5 leaves chopped mint
½ cup good quality Parmesan, grated
few ice cubes
peashoots and extra virgin olive oil for garnish

Add the olive oil into a saucepan pan and sweat the onions on a medium-low heat until tender and translucent.  Do not allow them to colour or brown.

Add the rice and stir to coat the grains in oil.

Add the white wine and cook until this has evaporated.

Put a third of a cup of the stock to the side.  Add half of the remaining stock to the pan and bring to a gentle simmer.  Ensure it retains a constant heat and gently stir as it cooks—it should take around 20 minutes. As the rice absorbs the stock and begins to swell, add the remaining liquid ladle by ladle as it is absorbed.
Season with a little salt and pepper.

Pea Puree:

Meanwhile, in a blender, add quarter of a cup of the fresh garden peas with a third of a cup of the vegetable stock plus a few ice cubes and pulse into a puree. (The ice cubes keep the pea puree very green.)

To serve

When the rice is tender, add the mint. Remove from the heat and gently stir in the pea puree and fresh peas. Mix through, add Parmesan and season to taste with salt and pepper.

Serve in a bowl and dress with pea shoots and a drizzle of good quality extra virgin olive oil.

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