International Recipes and Cooking Around the World

Risi e Bisi

Risi e Bisi Recipe (Italian stewed rice and peas)

(Italian stewed rice and peas)

Image © Comugnero Silvana - Fotolia.com

Average: 5 (1 vote)

Risi e bisi is springtime dish with rice and fresh peas from the Veneto region of northern Italy. This kid's favorite is more of aa thick soup than a risotto, so make sure to add enough stock to keep its consistency somewhat loose. And try to use fresh peas instead of frozen. They make a much more flavorful dish with a brighter green.

3 to 4 servings

Ingredients

  • Pancetta or salt pork, chopped finely -- 2 tablespoons
  • Onion, minced -- 1/2
  • Fresh peas -- 2 cups
  • Arborio or carnaroli rice -- 1 1/2 cups
  • Stock or water, simmering -- 4 cups
  • Parmesan, grated -- 1/2 cup
  • Fresh parsley, minced -- 1 tablespoon
  • Salt and pepper -- to taste

Method

  1. Heat a large saucepan over medium flame. Add the pancetta or salt pork and saute until it gives off most of its fat, 5 to 7 minutes.
  2. Add the onions and saute until they are translucent. Stir in the peas, rice and a big pinch of salt and cook for another 1 or 2 minutes to heat through.
  3. Pour in about 3 cups of the simmering stock. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  4. Pour in the rest of the stock and simmer for another 5 minutes.
  5. Remove from heat and stir in the Parmesan, parsley and salt and pepper to taste. Serve hot.

Risi e Bisi Variations

  • Substitute 2 tablespoons of olive oil for the pancetta for a vegetarian version.
  • Do not substitute regular long-grain rice in this dish. It will not develop the same creamy consistency. You can try it with another medium or short-grain rice though.

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