Friday, 22 June 2012

goats cheese and fennel risotto with pea and pernod served with goats cheese and cornish cheddar straws

... as you all know I live in the heart of the countryside... surrounded by nature's bounty... the sound of the cows bellowing in the field across from the cottage drifting through the open doors on a warm sunny day... so this morning as I lay in bed with the glorious summer sunshine streaming in through the gap in the curtains it was an unfamiliar tinkling of bells that gently woke me from my slumber... I could hear the clip-clop of cloven hooves trotting up my driveway and the gentle butting of horns on my front door... was that a bleating I could hear...?

... I feel very fortunate to have been included in the #CapricornChallenge... i'm not sure how she did it... did she walk all the way from Somerset...? but this morning Ethel the Goat delivered a beautiful hamper to my door... as you can see, the hamper is filled to brimming with glorious goodies as well as some divine Capricorn Somerset Goats Cheese... my challenge (although one could hardly call it challenging to cook with such inspirational produce) is to create some delightful dishes and blog about them...

.. it's win-win really... I get to cook and eat some yummy stuff... you hopefully get some inspirational recipes and lovely Ethel gets the chance to bleat about her wonderful cheese... to find out more about the challenge and Ethel herself check out the website...

goats cheese and fennel risotto with pea and pernod
in my humble opinion there are no 3 ingredients that go together better or are more reminiscent of summer evenings that fennel, pernod and goats cheese... yes it's a bit of a liquorish kick but it's subtle enough not to be overpowering and deep enough for the goats cheese to remain a light flavour to the final dish... oh and the aroma in the kitchen...

1 medium onion - finely chopped
1 medium fennel bulb - finely chopped
300g risotto rice
1 capful of pernod
2 pints good quality vegetable stock
a large handful of peas
100g Capricorn Goats Cheese
butter and olive oil

- melt some butter and olive oil in a heavy pan then add the onions and fennel and saute until soft

- add the rice and stir so that the rice soaks up the vegetable juices

- throw in the pernod and stir

- add the stock 100ml at a time, stirring after each addition until the stock is absorbed - this really shouldn't take too long, roughly 15 minutes

- once all the stock has gone you should be left with a thick but creamy risotto - add the peas, stir and then the goats cheese, stir once more and set the dish aside for 4 minutes before you serve.

goats cheese and cornish cheddar cheese straws
these are a super-fast but always impressive accompaniment for the risotto... barely worthy of a recipe but here goes...

1 sheet of ready rolled puff pastry
a wedge of strong cheddar - I used a cornish cheddar to keep in theme
40g Capricorn Goats Cheese

- pre heat the oven to 190C and line 2 baking trays with parchment

- dust your work surface with flour and lay out the pastry

- sprinkle with grated cheddar and bits of goats cheese

- fold the pastry over and roll out again

- repeat once more then cut into strips, twist, sprinkle with dried thyme and bake for 20 mins or until golden

eat and of course enjoy!


  1. I'm honest, I was attracted by the mention of Pernod. OK, I love goats cheese two. Well, well, risotto is also on my list!
    Luvly dish!!!

  2. You lucky thing! I had a Capricorn goat's cheese the other day, but Jane bought it to enter the competition...

  3. Have you tried the cider yet? It's lush!

    1. No. In the fridge. Waiting for a sunny day... Oh...

  4. What a divine sounding risotto and you have added another dimension with those crispy cheese straws, like it very much. Have no idea what to do with that cider either, it is perplexing me! x

  5. Hmmm, so delicious looking. The risotto with goat cheese must be so wonderfully creamy. The bright green peas gives it just the right shot of color too. Cheese straws are always a great idea. Is there anyone who doesn't love a cheese straw? I don't think so.

  6. I won't buy pernod just to make this, but I will buy goat just to make this, and fennel. I always have peas. Peter and I always, but always, love risotto, although I think we'll wait for weather less than the daily 95+ we're having just now.

  7. Oooh, cheese straws to give a contrasting crunch - inspired. I am stealing that for next time I do a risotto.

  8. Oh gee, does Ethel deliver 'across the pond?'? Definitely a win win situation, that creamy risotto looks fabulous, and the drop of Pernod is an inspired touch!
    (Thanks for your helpful suggestion the other day, I think I fixed it...)

  9. Your recipes are always amazing!!!!!!! Fantastic this risotto!!!!!

  10. Gosh, what a lovely risotto, and the cheese straws are inspired, so superior to garlic bread (my lazy option).
    I use cider to make a superb grainy mustard and cream sauce (a la Nigella) for pork, I'm sure you could adapt it for a veggie meal.

  11. What a nice friend Ethel is! I love what you've whipped up, you are officially a "Kitchen King" and I curtsy to your creativity! This dish looks like it would be a party in my mouth - delicious! I love what you did with your cheese straws too! Yum!

    Also, a technical question, how did you get the "P" (pinterest) at the bottom of your post?

  12. A great combo of flavors for a risotto! I love goat cheese but don't use it nearly enough..
    Great post,

  13. I do love a good risotto, but I've never really thought of using fennel or goats cheese in it - sounds very summery and light!

  14. Another goaty-licious recipe, never got around to making my baked risotto yet, but yours LOOKS LUSH! Karen xxx

  15. Not only does the risotto look perfect, but you put goat cheese in it.. that IS perfection in my book!!!


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