I enjoyed experimentIng with the basic risotto recipe to provide something a little more interesting, and slightly more healthy. The combination of carrot and celery works well together, and is similar to one of my previous pilaf recipes, but this is much more filling! I added vegetarian Parmesan to this at the end originally, but it is just as good if you omit it to make it vegan.
4 tbs olive oil
1 large onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 litre of good quality vegetable stock from bouillon
500g Arborio risotto rice
½ head celery, finely chopped
3 large carrots, peeled and grated
1 tsp dried tarragon
Salt and pepper to taste
1. In a large frying pan add the olive oil and sauté the onion and garlic very gently for 10 minutes, stirring regularly. Add the chopped celery and sauté for a further 3 minutes.
2. Add the rice to the pan, ensuring all of the grains are coated in the oil. Fry for a further 2 minutes.
3. Add the tarragon then half the stock, a ladle full at a time, stirring until each is absorbed. Add the remaining stock, cover and simmer for a further 10 minutes. Season to taste.
4. Add the grated carrot, and stir to combine.
5. Serve immediately with toasted bread and grilled asparagus, if desired.