Weekend Cook 2: BROAD BEAN RISOTTO Serves four. Total time 40 minutes

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The Independent Culture
IDLE HANDS beware, it's the season of podding and skinning beans. A task that is pleasant enough if you happen to be lazing on the lawn. This recipe makes a few precious beans go a long way.

900 g/2 lb broad beans in

their pods (approx 8 oz

podded weight).

1-1.2 litres/1 3/4-2 pt

chicken stock, seasoned.

90 g/3 oz unsalted butter.

1 small red onion, peeled

and chopped.

110 g/4 oz unsmoked streaky

bacon, rind removed and


1 tsp fresh thyme leaves.

275 g/10 oz risotto rice.

150 ml/5 fl oz white wine.

100 g/3 1/2 oz freshly grated


Pod the beans, bring a large pan of water to the boil and cook them for about three minutes until just tender. Drain them in a sieve and refresh under cold running water, then slip them out of their skins and reserve.

Have the stock simmering in a small pan, half-covered with a lid. Heat 50 g/2 oz of the butter in a large heavy-bottomed pan and sweat the onion, bacon and thyme over a low heat for a few minutes until the onion is soft and translucent, without colouring. Add the rice and stir; cook for a minute or two. Pour in the wine and once this has been absorbed start to add the simmering stock a ladle at a time, stirring occasionally. After about 20 minutes, when the rice is just tender, leaving it on the wet side, stir in the broad beans, then the Parmesan and remaining butter. Taste for seasoning and serve straightaway. Annie Bell