Easy peasy

Posted by Anita on 06.13.09 8:34 PM

(c)2009 AEC *all rights reserved*One of the greatest pleasures of growing your own food is standing next to your plot — preferrably while still in your pyjamas — and nibbling on the tenderest first bits of your harvest. I don’t think I’d be exaggerating if I said that Cameron and I probably ate a quarter of our shelling-pea crop in just that way. And even though it cut down dramatically on the number of peas that actually made it to the kitchen, I wouldn’t change a thing.

For this week’s One Local Summer meal, we enjoyed the last of our pea harvest in one of our favorite recipes, a risotto so deliciously savory that we’ve made it three times already this year. We’ve got another batch of peas already slinking their way up the trellis — courtesy of our mild summers, we get to enjoy spring crops nearly all year long — and already I am counting the days until we can make this simple supper again. Because although it’s fine with the regular farmers-market ingredients, it truly becomes its very best when made with tiny, super-sweet, just-picked baby peas.

(c)2009 AEC *all rights reserved*(c)2009 AEC *all rights reserved*(c)2009 AEC *all rights reserved*(c)2009 AEC *all rights reserved*(c)2009 AEC *all rights reserved*

Risi e Bisi (Venetian Style Pea Risotto)
- adapted from Molto Italiano

2T extra-virgin olive oil
1 shallot, chopped
1 celery rib, chopped
1 oz prosciutto, cut into in 1/8-inch dice
3/4 cup Arborio or Carnaroli rice
1 quart chicken stock, warmed
1 cup shelled fresh peas
2T butter
1/4 cup grated hard cheese, such as dry Jack or Parmesan
salt and pepper

Heat the olive oil in a tall-sided 10-inch skillet or saucier pan. Saute the shallots, celery, and prosciutto over medium heat until soft, about 8 minutes. Add the rice and stir for 2 minutes, until the grains become opaque. Add enough stock to just cover the rice, and stir until stock is absorbed. Continue to add stock a ladleful at a time, waiting until most of the liquid is absorbed before adding the next bit. Taste the rice, and season with salt and pepper. Add peas and cook for 4 minutes, until peas are just tender. Remove from heat, add butter and cheese, and stir until just melted. Serve in warmed shallow bowls.

Farmers and food artisans who created the ingredients for this week’s meal:One Local Summer 2009Bariani, Sacramento: Olive oil
Dirty Girl Produce, Santa Cruz: Shallots
Catalán Family Farm, Hollister: Celery
Boccalone, Oakland: Proscuitto cotto
Lundberg Family Farms, Richvale: Eco-farmed white Arborio rice
Spring Hill Cheese Company, Petaluma: Butter and Dry Jack cheese…plus our own homemade chicken stock, made from Marin Sun Farms and Soul Food Farm chicken bones and our own homegrown English shelling peas

locavore, One Local Summer, recipes



Comment by maybelles mom

wonderful entry for one local summer. so lucky to have your own peas. Right now, we don’t have a lot from our own garden.

Posted on 06.14.09 at 8:01AM

Comment by cookiecrumb

I have not grown peas! I am very happy for you.

Posted on 06.14.09 at 11:25AM

Comment by Michele Morris

I love this One Local Summer and would love to try to get folks in my area (Denver) to do something like this. Can you point me to a good contact?

I have my own vegetable garden, grow my own herbs, belong to a CSA, and teach cooking lessons to students of local schools who are involved in the Slow Food Seed to Table gardening program, so this idea is right up my alley!

Posted on 06.14.09 at 12:40PM

Comment by Mrs. L

I would so love to have some fresh peas…just not something we can grow on our brick patio. Haven’t seen them at our local farmers market yet either. So jealous you can stand there and eat them right out of the garden like that!

Posted on 06.15.09 at 12:30PM

Comment by Sean

Lord, how I wish DPaul like risotto. I can cheat it with orzo, which he prefers, but it’s not the same thing of course. Wonder how it would be with farro? Too overpowering?

Posted on 06.16.09 at 10:24AM

Comment by Becke (Columbus Foodie)

Wow – local arborio rice? I’m jealous. Looking forward to reproducing this one with local peas. Keep an eye out in a little while for this week’s OLS roundup.

Posted on 06.16.09 at 2:57PM

Comment by leendaluu

that looks fabulous..and I love how you constructed this entry. It’s a pleasure to read. I love the Lundberg products and use them all the time when I’m not doing 100% local.

Posted on 06.16.09 at 4:04PM

Comment by Jessamyn

I made risotto with fresh garden peas last night – from a friend’s garden, though, not my own – so they weren’t quite fresh picked. Still lovely and tasting of spring!

Posted on 06.19.09 at 10:57AM

Comment by ATigerintheKitchen

Stumbled upon your site while looking for a recipe for fresh peas. Great site! (Love the callouts to local producers.) I’ll keep checking back …

Posted on 06.27.09 at 7:43AM

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