Lemon Risotto with Garlic, Red Onion, Cashews and Olive Oil (vegan and gluten free)

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For me, my go-to comfort food is risotto…it is warming, hearty and super tasty. I’m a firm believer in a risotto not needing to be overpowered by too many ingredients and so here is my lemon risotto, that shines through and will give you a very happy belly, made with only five core ingredients. The aim was to have enough to make arancini but it tasted so good that there were no leftovers haha! The cashews give the risotto a creamy cheesy taste.


Preparation time: 1 hour (including cooking time)


Ingredients (Serves 3):

  • 1 large Red Onion (finely diced)
  • 3 cloves Garlic (finely chopped)
  • 1/2 cup Cashew Nuts (raw and unsalted)
  • 4 tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1 cup Arborio Rice (available in all supermarkets and delis)
  • 1 small Lemon (juiced)
  • 1 tsp Black Ground Pepper (from a pepper mill, not the crossly ground stuff)
  • 7 cups Boiling Water
  • 1 tsp Salt + extra to taste
  • 1/4 cup Chives (finely chopped)

Method:

  1. Heat the olive oil in a flat pan with a wide surface area
  2. Add the onions, garlic and 1 tsp salt to the hot oil and sweat down
  3. Once the onions have softened on a medium heat, add in the rice and let the rice lightly toast on a low-medium heat
  4. Meanwhile quickly grind the cashew nuts in a grinder until very fine and powder-y (alternatively use a pestle and mortar)
  5. Add the ground cashews into the rice mix and cook for a further 1 minute on high heat
  6. Keeping the pan on a medium heat, gradually add one cup of boiling water and mix continuously until the water has nearly evaporated
  7. Repeat step 6 until all the water has been used and you are left with a silky mix with soft rice grains (add more water if the rice is still chalky)
  8. At this point, add the lemon juice, black pepper and chives and stir through on a low heat
  9. Adjust the salt levels by taste
  10. Serve up with a drizzle of good extra virgin olive oil
  11. Enjoy my sweet Peas!

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