Share in the celebrations by recreating Garden and Home’s 65th-birthday lunch using these scrumptious recipes from top events company By Word of Mouth (bywordofmouth.co.za)
- 3 litres vegetable or chicken stock
- 250g unsalted butter
- 12 spring onions, finely chopped
- 4 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
- 200g baby carrots, trimmed and scraped but kept whole
- 800g risotto rice
- 200g asparagus spears, trimmed and cut into 2cm lengths
- 200g frozen peas, blanched in boiling water for a minute, then refreshed
- salt and freshly ground pepper
- 125ml chopped mixed fresh herbs, such as chives, dill, parsley, mint, chervil and tarragon
- 100g Parmesan cheese, finely grated
- wild rocket, Parmesan shavings and edible flowers, to serve
1. Place the stock in a saucepan, heat and keep at a gentle simmer.
2. Melt half the butter in a large, heavy saucepan and add the spring onions, garlic and carrots. Cook gently for 5 minutes until the onions are soft and translucent, but not browned. Add the rice and stir until well coated in the butter.
3. Begin adding the hot stock, a large ladleful at a time, stirring gently until each ladle has almost been absorbed by the rice. The risotto should be kept at a bare simmer throughout the cooking process; don’t let it dry out, add more stock as necessary.
4. After 10 minutes, add the asparagus and peas and continue to cook, adding ladlefuls of hot stock until the vegetables are tender and rice is tender and creamy, but the grains are still firm. (This should take 15–20 minutes depending on the type of rice used.)
5. Taste and season well with salt and pepper, then stir in the remaining butter, the herbs and the grated Parmesan.
6. Cover and let rest for a couple of minutes so the risotto can relax, then serve immediately topped with a handful of wild rocket, Parmesan shavings and an edible flower.
This recipe serves 8 as a main or 12–14 as a side dish.