Chicken, pumpkin and snow pea risotto
This simple and delicious Chicken Pumpkin and Snow Pea Risotto is perfect for summer, winter – actually, make that all seasons! It’s creamy, satiating and sustaining – all the benefits of comfort food – but doesn’t contain cream and won’t leave you feeling heavy. It’s also quite fresh, a little zesty and kinda crunchy in parts – a dream for your tastebuds but without the nasties of added flavour and preservatives. In fact, this risotto is sugar free and made from nothing but real, whole food ingredients.
This is the perfect risotto recipe to suit all diets. You can tailor it to suit vegetarians and vegans by omitting the chicken and choosing homemade vegetable stock, or if you’re strictly paleo, substitute grated cauliflower for the rice and reduce the amount of stock used.
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 brown onion
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1 small bunch thyme
- 1 generous pinch of salt
- 2 cups rice (you can use arborio if you like, but I used brown rice)
- 1 lemon, juice and zest
- 1/2 small pumpkin, chopped into small cubes
- 4 litres of stock (you can use vegetable or chicken stock, but I used homemade beef stock)
- 2 chicken breasts, or the breasts of a roast chicken or that used to make the chicken stock, shredded (you could omit if you’re a strict vegetarian)
- Handful of snow peas
- 2 handfuls baby spinach
- Sprig of mint
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Heat stock in a large pot over medium heat until it starts to boil then reduce to a simmer.
- If using fresh chicken breast (not from a roast chicken or that used to make the chicken stock), dice and add to a non-stick frypan over medium heat until cooked.
- Heat oil in a deep saucepan over low heat then add onion, garlic and thyme and cook until the onion is translucent.
- Add the rice and lemon juice and cook, stirring, until the lemon juice is absorbed.
- Add one ladel of stock at a time to the rice and stir through until soaked up by the rice, then add another ladel and stir thought until soaked up. Continue doing this until all stock has been used (this will take about 20 minutes), then remove from heat. Use your best judgement when it comes to how much stock you use. You might find you don’t need to use the full 4 litres of stock. It comes down to your preferred consistency as well as which style of ice (or cauliflower) you use.
- Add the chicken, snow peas and baby spinach and stir through the rice.
- Serve with some fresh mint and season with salt and pepper.
- Add the rice and lemon juice to the onion and cook, stirring, until the lemon juice has soaked in. Add pumpkin and stir though.
Serves 4 – 6