Pear and cheddar risotto

A tribute to Somerset! Had a masterclass in chopping onions and talked about risotto a lot today…


  1. 120 g risotto rice (Arborio or Carnaroli)
  2. 1 Conference pear
  3. 1 onion
  4. 50 g mature cheddar
  5. 1 l hot vegetable stock
  6. Half a glass of ale (or cider?)
  7. lemon zest or lemon thyme
  8. Olive oil
  9. Salt and pepper


  1. Chop the onion finely.

  2. Heat 2-3 tablespoons of olive oil in a non stick pan and add a pinch of salt. Fry the onions for a few minutes on low heat.

  3. In the meantime, chop the pear in 1 cm cubes. Once the onions are golden, add the pears to the pan.

  4. After a couple of minutes, add the rice and toast it for one minute or so mixing continuously.

  5. Remove from heat to cool down the pan. Then add the ale and mix until it stops sizzling. Return the pan on the hob, on low heat.

  6. Start adding stock, one ladleful at a time while – you guessed it – stirring the risotto.

  7. Keep stirring adding more stock when the risotto gets dry. It should simmer and be moist – you’ll see the starch come out and look creamier the more you stir.

  8. It should take about 20 minutes to cook, but you’re the best judge. Keep it al dente!

  9. Remove from heat, add grated cheddar and lemon zest or lemon thyme. Mix well. Season with salt, pepper and olive oil.

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