Gulf News 'Your Ramadan Table' food show: Spinach risotto with peas and feta cheese

Gulf News 'Your Ramadan Table' food show: Spinach risotto with peas and feta cheese

Chef John Buenaventura's recipe shines with rich, buttery goodness and sweet peas

Video Credit: Anas Thacharpadikkal/ Gulf News

Preparation time: 20 minutes

Cooking time: 40 minutes

Serves: 2 to 3


450 gms spinach

1 cups peas, shelled

100 gms feta cheese

2 cups Carnaroli rice

2 cups vegetable stock

50 gms dehydrated olives

30 gms garlic

150 gms butter

200 gms parmesan cheese

Olive oil, as needed

Salt to taste

2 tbsp lemon juice


Roughly chop the spinach and white onions and remove the seeds from the dehydrated olives. Set aside.

In a pan with some olive oil, sauté the chopped white onion over a medium flame. Then add the chopped garlic. Once the onion becomes translucent, add the chopped spinach and a pinch of salt. Stir it and turn off the flame.

Once cooled, add a teaspoon of lemon juice to the spinach mix and puree it in a blender. Then, keep it in the chiller.

For vegetable stock, add 2 litres of water in a pot and heat it until the water comes to a boil. Add the roughly chopped carrot, celery, and onions to it. Simmer it again for 15 to 20 minutes. Once done, keep it aside. The vegetable stock is now ready.

To make risotto, add olive oil to a pan over a medium flame. Add chopped white onion and garlic. Sauté until the raw smell dissipates. Then add carnaroli rice and stir over a low flame until it softens. Also, add a few sprigs of thyme and rosemary. Then add vegetable stock (hyperlink), combine well, and let it cook for 10 to 15 minutes. As the stock gets absorbed, add more until it's cooked. Add butter and grate some parmesan cheese. Combine it well.

Meanwhile, in another saucepan, blanch the fresh green peas with a pinch of salt. Once done, strain it.

Add the peas to the cooked Carnaroli rice, combine well and turn off the flame. Now mix it with the spinach puree, add dehydrated olives, fold it together and top it with crumbled feta cheese. Drizzle some olive oil and serve hot.


Arborio rice can also be used instead of Carnaroli rice.

Ensure not to over-blend while pureeing the spinach, as it can change the colour and taste.

You can always half-cook the risotto and keep it in the chiller for later use.

It's light, creamy, healthy, and full of flavour. It's so easy to make. You'll love the buttery goodness and sweetness of the peas. Make sure you try this at home.

- Chef John Buenaventura, Executive Chef and Host of Your Ramadan Table by Gulf News

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