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Easy Leek and Lemon Risotto with Green Peas and Spinach

This is a deliciously flavourful and easy to make risotto using fresh lemon, leek, green peas and spinach. The lemon flavour is refreshing without being overpowering, a great recipe for spring but would work at any time of year! The veggies could also be swapped out for whatever you have on hand, don't be afraid to experiment!

Course Dinner, Lunch, Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine Italian
Keyword Easy Risotto, Leek and Lemon Risotto, Lemon Risotto, Risotto
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Servings 4 people

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 3 small leeks washed and thinly sliced, white and light green section only
  • 4 cloves garlic peeled and finely diced or minced
  • 1.5 cups arborio rice rinsed
  • 2 whole lemons zested
  • 1 heaped cup frozen green peas
  • 2 large handfuls fresh baby spinach
  • 5 cups quality vegetable stock
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 1/4 cup parmesan cheese (plus more for serving) substitute nutritional yeast for vegan/dairy free alternative
  • 1/5 cup chopped fresh parsley leaves
  • 1 tsp salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Pour stock and water into a small pot and bring to a gentle simmer over a medium heat before reducing to a low heat to keep warm

  2. While the stock/water is warming, prepare all ingredients as per the ingredient list above - to prepare the leeks, make sure to use only the white and light green section, slice in half lengthways, thouroughly rinse with water and then thinly slice

  3. Place a large wok or pan over a medium heat and add olive oil

  4. Once oil is warm, add the sliced leek and minced garlic, saute for 3 - 4 minutes until transluscent

  5. Add the rinsed aborio rice and stir well to coat in the remaining oil, saute for 3 minutes or so until rice looks a little transluscent

  6. Add the white wine and stir well until it is absorbed into the rice, you may need to adjust the heat a little lower

  7. Add 1-2 ladles of warm stock and continue to stir rice gently until stock is absorbed before adding another 1-2 ladles of stock - repeat this process until you rice is cooked

  8. You should be able to start testing the rice after about 15 minutes, however it will generally take about 20 minutes, the rice is ready when you can easily bite through, there should be a little firmness in the middle (you don't want mush) but it shouldn't be crunchy

  9. Add in the zest of the two lemons, the juice of one of the lemons, the parmesan cheese, the green peas and the baby spinach

  10. Stir well until peas are cooked through and spinach is wilted

  11. Season with salt and pepper to taste

  12. Serve in bowls topped with liberal amounts of parmesan cheese (or nutritional yeast) and freshly chopped parsley leaves

  13. Enjoy!

Recipe Notes

Risotto is generally best eaten fresh, rice doesn't tend to freeze too well, however if you do happen to have leftovers, you can store them in an airtight container in the fridge and use within 1-2 days. Instead of microwaving I recommend heating on the stove with some more stock.

If you don't have the vegetables called for in this recipe, why not use what you do have? This is completely customisable you can substitute for the produce you have on hand!