1 onion, finely chopped
2 cloves of garlic, finely minced
A large quantity of nettle tops, washed, picked over then dropped into boiling water for a minute or so. Once cooked, shock them in iced water so that the bright green colour remains, strain well then very finely chop and fry in a little butter.
300g of risotto rice
2 glasses of dry white wine
1litre of chicken stock, warmed
25-50g Yarg cheese, finely grated.
Soften the onion and garlic with the butter over a gentle heat until the turn translucent. Remove from the pan and reserve. Dry the pan and crank up the heat. Toast the rice for 2-3 minutes taking care not to burn it. Add the onion and garlic back to the rice then pour in the wine. It will bubble like mad.
Ladle in some of the stock so that the rice is covered, stir then let it bubble away. As soon as it looks as if it is too dry, add some more. It should bubble away like an active swamp.
A good risotto should be semi-liquid. Keep tasting it and checking the texture of the rice. When it is barely cooked add another ladle full of stock and remove from the heat. It will look too wet but don’t worry – risotto has a tendency to seize up as it cools. Stir in a healthy dose of butter and the cheese and fold through your cooked and chopped nettles. Taste the risotto and add salt and pepper as necessary, then spoon into warm bowls.
With thanks to chef Alex Rushmer!