Recipe Wk05 Oven Baked Leek and Bacon Risotto

I love risotto. It's gooey but not soggy and so comforting when it's cold. What I don't like? The standing and stirring in the stock all the time. I came across this recipe from bbcgoodfood.com and had never thought of trying to make risotto in the oven. I needed to see whether it worked or not. Here is how it went...

Ingredients (for 4 people)
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 6 rashers smoked back bacon, roughly chopped
  • 2 leeks, halved lengthways and finely sliced
  • 250g risotto rice
  • 700ml hot chicken or vegetable stock
  • 175g frozen peas
  • 3 tbsp soft cheese
  • zest 1 lemon


Recipe
  1. Heat oven to 200C/180C fan/ gas 6. Tip the oil into an ovenproof casserole dish. Add bacon and fry for 2 mins. Add the leeks and cook until soft, but not coloured, for about 4-5 mins. Tip in rice and cook for 1 min more. Pour over stock. Cover and place in the oven for 20 mins, stirring halfway.
  2. When rice is just tender and all liquid is absorbed, remove from oven and stir in peas. Place back in oven for 2 mins more. Remove and stir in cheese. Add zest and season.
 I was a little worried when I first put the stock in that there was too much of it, but after the half time stir, I could see it absorbing pretty well. When it came out, the rice was perfectly cooked and the addition of the cream cheese (though I only used 1 tablespoon for 2 portions) made it deliciously creamy.
 I served the risotto with broccoli and spinach, which for me helps break up the risotto texture. The flavour of the smokey bacon and leek was so yummy, it was hard to believe how easy it is. As you don't have to stand by this the whole time while it is cooking, it makes risotto more of an everyday meal which I think is great. This is definitely a recipe I shall be trying again and will be recommending it to family and friends as well.

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