… so I have news… In a few weeks time – just in time for Christmas in fact, I will be migrating my blog to a self-hosting site with a lovely new wordpress template. Yes, i’ve finally taken the plunge to give this little old blog a facelift. I’m really not 100% quite sure why i’m doing it but I think it’s because I feel like I need a little kick up the backside… a refresh… a new lease of life… and I felt it was something I couldn’t do here on clunky old blogger and it means i’ll begin 2017 with a fresh outlook on a world that I was increasingly becoming a little tired with. I’ve complained before about how busy my real life has become (it feels dreadful to complain about a successful life but it’s more a moan about the levels of stress rather than the actual work.) I love what I do in both my events work at The Persuaders and of course I love my blog but I was beginning to resent it all a little – not having the time to blog because work was so busy which made me not want to use up my rare and valuable free time working on the blog but also resenting work which is utterly stupid. I think i’m over that hump now and I think it came from learning to let go and be free from the chains of the dreaded SEO and just get on and do my thing without having to worry about all that. Don’t get me wrong, I still want Belleau Kitchen to be successful but it needs to be on my terms… so a new platform to shout from is the way forward. I’ll admit that i’m a little nervous about how used to blogger I am and how I hate learning new things but i’m assured that it will all be very user-friendly and that i’ll get on just fine. What it does mean for you lot out there is that there may be some slight disruptions to service over the next couple of weeks but rest assured my url will remain the same and I will be back up and showing off in time to share some rather delicious Christmas goodies I have planned. Until then, here’s a risotto…
sausage, mushroom and pea risotto
so Dad came to stay at the cottage a couple of weeks ago and you know what it’s like as a food blogger, you’re always trying to think of something to cook that will impress to that your house guests will depart with the knowledge that you do actually know what you’re doing and those pictures you post on instagram every week aren’t fake… anyway, as it happens, for reasons too dull to explain here I had to spend the weekend baking a large number of frangipane mince pies for the freezer so that they’d be ready for the demo-cooking i’m doing next weekend at the Food and Gift Fair at the Lincolnshire Showground but this meant that whilst dad was oohing and ahhing over the glorious Christmas aromas wafting in from the kitchen, he couldn’t actually eat any of it… and by the time i’d spent all of Saturday and most of Sunday baking I really didn’t want to be chained to the kitchen cooking meals… so I made a risotto. Now this may sound ridiculous to you… surely a risotto is the antithesis of not being chained to the kitchen but actually I love making risotto. It’s my happy place. I adore watching it all slowly come together. There’s something so satisfying as you slowly add the liquid and watch the rice gently swell and become creamy. This risotto is divine. The sausage meat crumbles as you cook it and infuses the whole dish with a wonderfully comfort food vibe and of course the peas just give the whole dish a perky lift at the end… needless to say it went down a storm and the tow of us polished off the lot in one sitting!
serves 4 (or two greedy buggers)
- a little butter and olive oil
- 5 spring onions -roughly chopped
- 6 good quality sausages – roughly chopped (I used some pork and apple sausages)
- 150g chestnut mushrooms – sliced
- 250g risotto rice – arborio rice is my preferred grain
- 1 glass white white
- 1 litre good quality vegetable stock
- 100g fresh or frozen peas
- at least 80g of hard cheese such as parmesan or strong cheddar, I actually used a little of both and probably a little more than 100g
- 1 teaspoon oregano – dried or fresh
in a large pan gently heat plenty of butter and olive oil then saute the spring onions along with the sausages. The sausages should breakdown into what’s essentially a mince but they should brown nicely along with the onions. Halfway through the cooking add the mushroom slices along with plenty of ground black pepper and fresh herbs and continue to cook until the mushrooms are soft
add the rice and stir around to coat all the grains then turn up the heat a little and throw in the white wine and begin to gently stir
add the stock a cup at a time, stirring gently between each addition… at first the rice will soak up the stock quite greedily as you stir but after the fourth or fifth addition of stock it will take longer and the risotto should be creamier
when you’ve used up 2 thirds of the stock throw in a handful of grated cheese between each addition of stock and continue to stir. Once all the stock is gone your rice should be tender. Throw in a handful of grated cheese and the peas, stir and set aside for 5 mins before serving. The whole process should take roughly 25 minutes but it can sometimes be quicker. Don’t have the heat on too high at any point but not too low either, it’s a fine balance.
eat and of course, enjoy!