Risotto with Sweet Peppers and Green Beans
Adapted from Marcella Cucina, recipe by Marcella Hazan
Serves 4 to 6
This recipe includes some of our fresh green beans with our sweet peppers. The original recipe calls for sweet yellow peppers but you can experiment with our array of sweet peppers. I’ve made this risotto before and it is delicious. To get the proper risotto texture you must use a short-grain starchy rice- Carnaroli is good as is Arborio, which you can get at the grocery store. You also must stir the rice as it cooks- you want to release the starch to develop the creamy risotto texture. You could make it vegetarian by using a vegetable instead of a beef base. Pan-fry any leftovers as little cakes for a light lunch the next day.
1⁄2 lb. green beans, trimmed
1 beef bouillon cube
3 tbsp. butter
1 tbsp. vegetable oil
1 small yellow onion, peeled and finely chopped
1 sweet bell pepper, cored, seeded and diced into 1⁄2″ pieces (use two peppers if they are small)
1 2⁄3 cups Carnaroli or other Italian short-grain risotto rice
2⁄3 cup freshly grated parmigiano-reggiano
Freshly ground black pepper
Cook beans in a medium pot of boiling salted water for 2 minutes, then drain. Cut cooled beans into 1⁄2″ pieces and set aside.
Meanwhile, bring 6 cups of water to a boil in a medium pot over high heat. Reduce heat to low, add bouillon cube, and stir until dissolved. Keep broth warm over low heat.
Heat 1-1⁄2 tbsp. of the butter, the oil, and the onions in a medium-size heavy pot over medium-high heat. Cook, stirring often with a wooden spoon, until onions are pale gold, about 7 minutes. Add peppers, increase heat to high, and cook for about 1⁄2 minute, stirring constantly. Add reserved green beans and cook, stirring often, for 3–4 minutes.
Add rice to the beans and peppers, stirring to coat with the oil and butter and to combine it with the vegetables. Add 3⁄4 cup of the simmering broth at a time, stirring the rice constantly; wait until almost all of the broth has been absorbed before adding more. Continue cooking and adding broth (you may have some broth left over) until rice is tender but firm, about 15 minutes.
Remove pot from heat and vigorously stir in remaining 1 1⁄2 tbsp. butter and the parmigiano-reggiano, then season with salt and pepper. Transfer to a warm platter and serve at once.