Here’s an easy risotto recipe that has a lot of flavor and color! We roasted the peppers ourselves, but you could easily use roasted red peppers from a jar or can to cut down on preparation time. It takes about an hour to cook, but most of that time is just the rice sitting on the stove top, so you can spend time doing other things while the meal is cooking! We made a lot of risotto so we would have leftovers to make rice balls with. For two people you would want half of this recipe.
To make the roasted peppers, turn the oven to broil for five minutes to heat it up. Take four large red, orange, or yellow whole peppers of the same size and place them on a foil lined cookie sheet in your oven. Broil until completely burned on each side, rotating every five minutes. You want the peppers to cook evenly, so make sure they are placed evenly under your broiler.
Once they are charred, quickly remove them and place them in a paper bag for ten minutes. The moisture from inside the peppers will help steam their skins off.
While the peppers are roasting and steaming in the bags, heat up around eight cups (you may not use it all) of vegetable stock in a large saucepan. Finely chop one onion and a few cloves of garlic (pieces no larger than a grain of rice) and zest and juice a lemon. Finely chop a handful of parsley. By now the peppers should be cool. Peel off their skins and remove the charring. Slice into strips and then chop the strips into pieces no larger than a grain of rice.
Heat a few tablespoons of olive oil in a pan and add the onions and garlic. Cook until they are translucent and then add the rice (around two cups). Add some white wine and the lemon juice and zest. Cook for another three or four minutes. Add the peppers and then start ladling in the broth (which should be hot by now) a cup or so at a time, stirring frequently.
Add more liquid every five or so minutes as it absorbs. Add some salt and pepper to taste. At the last two minutes, stir in some parsley and Parmesan cheese (about a half a cup or so) of each and stir quickly for a creamy consistency. Garnish with a parsley sprig and lemon zest.
This is best served fresh! We made so much because we wanted to use for rice balls (recipe coming up) but you can eat as-is as leftovers if you’d like! Also, red peppers are great in sandwiches or salads, with balsamic vinegar and olive oil and they are much cheaper to make on your own than to buy!