Risotto with Peas and Bacon

9 Sep

5 cups chicken or vegetable broth

1 1/2 cups water

6 slices thick-cut bacon

4 tablespoons butter

1 large onion, chopped fine

1 medium garlic clove, minced

2 cups Arborio or pearl rice

1 cup dry white wine (or water)

2 ounces grated Parmesan cheese

1 teaspoon lemon juice

2 tablespoons fresh chopped parsley (or 1 tablespoon dried)

1/8 teaspoon fresh thyme

1 cup frozen peas

Bring broth and water to a boil in a large sauce pan over high heat. reduce heat to medium-low to maintain a gentle simmer.

Cook bacon in a large Dutch oven. Remove and set aside. Drain pan but do not wipe out! You want to keep those nice crispy bits at the bottom.

Heat 2 tablespoons of the butter in the Dutch oven over medium heat. When melted, add onions and season with salt and pepper; cook, stirring frequently until onion is softened but not browned, 4 to 7 minutes.

Add garlic, stir. Add rice and cook, stirring frequently, until grains are translucent around the edges, about 3 minutes.

Add wine and cook, stirring constantly, until fully absorbed, 2 to 3 minutes.

Stir in 5 cups of hot broth mixture, reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until almost all liquid has been absorbed and rice is just al dente, 16 to 19 minutes, stirring twice during cooking.

Add frozen peas to the broth mixture left in the sauce pan, remove from heat, and cover. Chop bacon.

Add 3/4 cup broth mixture and stir gently and constantly until risotto becomes creamy, about 3 minutes. Stir in Parmesan. Remove from heat, cover, and let stand 5 minutes.

Stir in remaining 2 tablespoons of butter, lemon juice, parsley, thyme, bacon, and peas; season with salt and pepper to taste.  If desired, add up to 1/2 cup remaining broth mixture to loosen texture of risotto. Serve immediately and enjoy.

Adapted from Cooks Illustrated and Elizabeth David

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