Snail, baked garlic and parsley risotto

Serves 4-6

Snails and garlic are a perfect marriage – we use jumbo garlic bulbs from the Isle of Wight in the restaurant, but if you can't get hold of them, then normal-sized cloves will also be fine.

You can use frozen or canned snail meat for this as you may well struggle getting fresh!

1 jumbo or 3 normal bulbs of garlic
200g carnaroli rice
3-4 large shallots, peeled and finely chopped
60g butter plus 100g to finish
150ml white wine
750ml-1ltr hot chicken stock
16 snails, halved
4tbsp chopped parsley
4tbsp double cream

Preheat the oven to 200C/gas mark 6. Wrap the garlic bulbs in foil and bake in the oven for about an hour for the jumbo and 30 minutes for the normal size.

Remove the foil, leave to cool, then carefully break open the bulbs and remove the cloves and any surrounding skin. The very large cloves can be cut in half.

Gently cook the shallots in 60g of the butter for 2-3 minutes without colouring, stirring every so often. Add the rice and stir on a low heat for a minute.

Add the wine and stir for another minute or so, then slowly start adding the stock and lightly season with salt and pepper.

Stir every so often on a low heat until the rice has absorbed the stock; continue adding the stock and stirring until the rice is cooked but still has a bit of a bite. The risotto should not be too dry, but instead, a sloppy, spooning consistency.

Stir in the snails, the garlic, the rest of the butter, the parsley and double cream; season again if necessary and add a little more stock if the consistency isn't quite there.

To serve, spoon the risotto onto warmed plates or into bowls.

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