brussels sprout and bacon risnotto

Ah yes, good old brussels sprout and bacon risnotto – it’s our way of making risotto without having to stand over your pan stirring furiously and blinking back hot tears of lament over what your life has become. For me, life is just too short to stir stock. Who else is going to sit simmering with rage at another advert with a twee vocal cover version of a song? Bloody Battersea Dogs’ Home and their I Only Want To Be With You shite. Bah!

No time for length tonight as it’s been a long day sorting out presents for Old Mother Hubbard. 

Actually, my poor mother gets a lot of stick on here, but she’s really quite wonderful. Helpful, pleasant, decent haircut – all words that she’s used to describe me at times. We’re not one of those families that sit around over dinner every Sunday laughing gaily and talking about the neighbours, but we’re close and I couldn’t do without either of them. So: mother, I’ll put this on here because you’re too tight to buy your son’s book – happy mother’s day. Enjoy it, and remember to smile, for it is I who chooses the care-home.

Tonight’s meal uses a much-maligned vegetable – the sprout. It’s a shame these little balls of farts don’t get more love – they’re great for you, cheap to buy and very versatile. Yes, they smell like a church cushion when they’re cooked and admittedly, they look like the Jolly Green Giant’s haemorrhoids, but still, make do. If you’re not a fan still give this dish a go – it doesn’t taste like sprouts, but their nutty flavour seeps into the dish. 

This recipe very easily serves four. You’ll need a decent pot to cook it in though, or at least a good non-stick pan. I’m telling you, buy a Le Creuset casserole pot. Yes, they’re expensive but we use ours every single day and it remains entirely non-stick and wonderful to cook with. Plus, lifetime guarantee AND you get to be a Barry Big Bollocks when anyone comes around. What price can you put on that? Actually, £110, reduced from £170, right here at the time of writing. It’s quite honestly the best thing in our kitchen.

brussels sprout and bacon risnotto

to make brussels sprout and bacon risnotto, you’ll need:

  • 250g of peeled brussels sprouts (we just buy them ready done from Tesco, oh the extravagance!)
  • eight medallions of bacon (did you know you get fabulous, lovely bacon in our Musclefood deal? Why not have a look? No seriously, come on, look!)
  • one large white onion
  • one minced garlic clove
  • as many peas as you dare
  • 350g of risotto/arborio rice
  • 900ml of chicken or vegetable stock
  • pepper and parmesan (taken from your healthy extra at the end)

to make brussels sprout and bacon risnotto, you should:

  • prepare the sprouts by slicing them thinly, whether you use a knife, mandolin slicer or a food processor
  • slice the onion and bacon into small chunks
  • tip the onion, bacon, sprouts and garlic into a good, solid non-stick pan and put on a medium heat, allowing everything to cook and sweat nicely
  • once your onions are golden and the bacon is cooked, tip in the peas and the rice
  • stir the rice through the juice of the onions and bacon, but don’t over-stir, you’re mixing delicate flavours and good wishes, not cement
  • pour in the stock and immediately cover the pan – cook for twenty minutes on a medium heat (8 on our induction hob, which goes to 15) – don’t lift the lid to peek, don’t cheat
  • after twenty minutes take a look – if you feel it needs a bit longer, go for it, but remember it’ll cook away for a bit without any heat
  • serve with pepper and parmesan
  • if we’re feeling particularly filthy, we’ll stir in our HEA allowance of soft cheese or a good dollop of mustard

Have a good evening, all,