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Cover: Kitchen in the city

13Apr 14

Risi and bisi… guess what !


Translation by Alessandra Dubini – Marlborough College

Mondays have always been for me a day for purifying my body and soul after eating all the temptations I normally try to resist during the week. This time instead of doing the simple vegetable soup I was inspired by a bag of fresh peas that were lying around in the fridge. I have started having this obsession with fresh seasonal vegetables so I started going to the market and buying them. Googling the recipe I am about to propose to you I found out that Carlo Cracco was already giving tips on how to make a creamy broth.

Imagine Venice in the year of 1500 where ships arrived to offer the best goods from Asia, colours and new flavours, and with it also rice. It’s the 25th of April the day of San Marco and the Doge has on the menu the rice as a tradition.

Its not a soup but its not a rice, its something in between. As I said the peas are of season and they are extremely sweet which makes a great contrast with the salty flavour of ham, or bacon. The broth has to be very light of vegetables.

Lets start by getting the lightest broth only made of vegetables and by adding a very small amount of chicken. If you know where the peas come from then you can also use the pods which you will obviously wash well. If not then don’t bother using them. I dries 1kg of peas. I then got a shallot, I fried it in a pan with a teas spoon of butter and 50g of bacon thinly cut. I then added 300g of rice and peas. Not all of them keep a handful and put it in the soup and covered it with a lot of broth.

Cooking tips: If you want that the peas stay of a nice green strong colour and not to become yellow it’s better to put them through the steamy broth and with a skimmer transfer them  in a bowl with cold water before cooking them.. It’s the same trick every time, works like magic!

Nothing more. The rice has to swim in the broth. A few minutes before reaching the boiling point I blended with the blender the peas that put the broth with a bit of water, and then added the sauce that lies in the casserole so the sweet flavour of peas is enhanced., As a tradition you should pass through the sieve the pods, but seeing as I don’t really know where they come from I would rather not risk it.  Add salt and pepper and a bit of parmesan cheese grated on the top.


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