Rice with Broccoli Pesto

For those of you who read last night’s post, you may have noticed the beautiful green color of my rice.  This is a dish that vegetable lovers should try–it’s easy and GREAT–and you can even use frozen broccoli.  It was my  way of using up the last of last year’s local broccoli harvest from my freezer. 

As I’ve said before, broccoli loses some of its texture and becomes a bit watery when frozen.  It’s still great to put in soups, or to puree.  In tonight’s case, I decided to make a coarse puree of the broccoli and add some lively ingredients to make a pesto.  The pesto then gets folded into rice, to make an intensely green rice dish that is equal parts rice and vegetable.

Rice with Broccoli Pesto

serves 4

1 – 1/2 c arborio rice

3 cups chicken broth (or boullion dissolved in water)

1 bunch cooked broccoli (fresh or frozen)

1/4 c smoked almonds (or regular salted almonds)

grated zest of half a lemon

1/2 c grated parmiggiano

1/2 c extra-virgin olive oil

1/2 tsp salt (or to taste)

1/2 tsp black pepper

In a small pot, bring broth or boullion to a boil, then add rice and cover.  Cook at the lowest heat for about 10 minutes.

In a food processor, pulse the almonds alone until they’re finely chopped, then add broccoli, and remaining ingredients and process into a coarse puree.

Add the pesto to the pot of simmering rice and gently warm the entire mixture, covered,  on low heat for a few minutes.  Taste and gently stir.  Add more broth or grated cheese, as desired.


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