Ben’s Summer Green Risotto and Rice Tuile

For the green vegetable purée 

  • 200g fresh asparagus
  • 200g fresh peas, podded
  • 200g fresh broad beans, podded 200g watercress
  • 200g spinach
  • 10g chervil
  • 5g oregano
  • 2 tbsp mascarpone
  • 4 tbsp olive oil, extra virgin 

For the rice tuile 

  • 200g short grain rice 300ml vegetable oil 
  • 50g Pecorino Romano 1 lemon 

For the risotto 

  • 1 brown onion 2 cloves garlic 

For the green vegetable purée 

  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter 50ml olive oil, extra virgin 200g risotto rice
  • 100ml white wine
  • 1ltr chicken stock, warm 

For the frogs legs 

  • 1 tbsp butter, unsalted
  • 6ea frogs legs
  • 1 tsp chopped fresh thyme 1 tsp chopped fresh chives 

To finish 

  • 12 Datterini tomatoes, halved 2 tbsp pine nuts, toasted
  • 8 black olives, halved
  • 1 lemon 
  • 3 sprigs fresh chervil Chive flowers
  • Fresh oregano 

1- For the green vegetable purée 

Place a large saucepan over a high heat and season generously with salt. Fill a large bowl with ice water. Trim the bases from the asparagus and then slice the stalk into 0.5cm rounds – keep the tips whole. When the water has come to a rapid boil, blanch the asparagus, peas and broad beans for just 1 minute. After a minute use a slotted spoon or spider to transfer the cooked vegetables to the ice water to stop the cooking. Drain the cooled vegetables from the ice water onto a tea towel-lined tray. Repeat the blanching and cooling process with the watercress, spinach, chervil and oregano. Once cold, transfer the watercress, spinach and herbs to the jug of a blender, squeezing out excess water, along with half of the blanched vegetables, 2 tbsp of mascarpone and 2 tbsp olive oil. Blend on high until silky smooth and very thick. Add in an ice cube or two to adjust the consistency – this trick keeps the purée cold which helps it retain its vibrant colour. Taste and adjust the seasoning. 

2- For the rice tuile 

Place the cooked short grain rice into a large saucepan along with 600ml water and a pinch of salt. Place over a high heat and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 30 minutes until the rice is fully cooked and the grains start to fall apart. Drain through a sieve, reserving the cooking water.  Tip the rice into the jug of a high powered blender and add enough of the cooking water to just cover the rice. Blend on high until silky smooth and the mixture thickens to the consistency of custard. Use a little extra water if required to achieve the desired consistency. Tightly clingfilm a plate. Using a palette knife, evenly spread 2 tbsp of the rice purée over the clingfilm. Microwave on full power for 2.5 minutes until the mixture dries out and becomes translucent.  Once slightly cooled, peel the dried mixture from the clingfilm and tear into large pieces. Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat or in a deep fryer to 180°C. Once hot, deep fry the rice shards until puffed and starting to lightly colour. Drain on kitchen paper Once cooled, finely grate over the Pecorino and lemon zest. Season generously with cracked black pepper. 

3- For the risotto 

Peel and finely dice the onion and garlic. Put a large saucepan over a low heat and add the butter and olive oil. Let the butter melt and then add the shallot and garlic along with a pinch of salt and pepper. Gently sweat, with a lid on, for 5 minutes until translucent and soft. Increase the heat to medium and stir in the rice. Toast the rice in the fat until it starts to go translucent and the onion and garlic lightly colour. Tip in the wine and bring to a boil. Reduce the liquid until the pan is nearly dry and then start adding stock a ladle at a time, stirring regularly. Keep the heat low so that the risotto just barely simmers. Continue for approximately 15 minutes until the rice is plump and almost cooked. 

4- For the frogs legs 

Place a medium frying pan over a medium heat and add the butter. Lightly season the frogs legs with salt and pepper. Once the butter has melted, increase the heat to high and allow the butter to foam and turn a nutty brown before adding the frogs legs. Saute the legs for 2 minutes on each side until golden brown all over. Remove the pan from the heat and add the herbs, stir in and then squeeze in the juice from the lemon that you zested over the tuiles. Tip the cooked legs onto a small tray and allow to cool slightly before removing the meat from the bones. 

5- To finish the risotto 

Once the risotto rice is al dente and the pan is starting to go dry, add in a few spoons of the green purée and stir well. Stir in the remaining blanched vegetables and warm through gently. Finely grate in 25g of Parmesan. Taste and adjust the seasoning. Lightly season the tomatoes, pine nuts and olives with a pinch of salt, pepper and olive oil. Portion the risotto between bowls and top with the frog meat, halved Datterini tomatoes, pine nuts, olive slices, a squeeze of lemon juice, a drizzle of olive oil, chive and thyme flowers and a rice tuile.