Risotto is one of the most versatile dishes around and fab for using up leftovers. Once your basic recipe with Arborio rice, shallots, garlic, stock and perhaps a little white wine is on the go, you can throw in almost anything from your store cupboard, fridge or freezer.
Handfuls of veg, leftover meat from your Sunday roast, flaky fish, peas, spinach, pinto beans, sautéed mushrooms and eggs all work beautifully.
Here are some tasty recipes to inspire you...
Frozen or leftover cooked peas are delicious in risotto, cutting through the creamy richness with their fresh, naturally sweet flavour. Goats cheese is a twist on the usual parmesan.
Stir beaten eggs through a basic risotto recipe at the end of cooking, then add cheese and - for extra salty naughtiness - some crumbled, crispy bacon.
This carbonara recipe is baked, so there’s no need to stand guard over a pan.
Got some meatballs leftover from last night’s spaghetti - or even homemade burgers from the BBQ? Chuck ’em in!
Cooked or preserved beetroot gives this dish its wonderful ruby colour. Seriously impressive (and sneakily simple).
This store cupboard standby (or flaked, leftover tuna steaks) is delicious with creamy, cheesy rice.
For a twist, try this amazing risotto pie.
Roasted and even tinned tomatoes add tangy juiciness to risotto. A little basil torn over the top, maybe a squeeze of lemon, and you’re all set.
Chop up leftover cooked bangers or use chorizo for a Spanish twist. This recipe uses beer - perfect for ale that’s gone a little flat.
Got some scrapes left in the jar? Stir it into your rice. Tasty with roasted tomatoes, too.
Tear leftover roast meat into your basic risotto with some lemon juice/zest and fresh herbs. Throw in chopped leeks to make it even tastier.
Lemon and garlic
Sometimes simple really is best. Garlic, shallots, a splash of white wine, a handful of parmesan, zest and a twist of lemon juice. Delicious.
Or add saffron to your stock for a delicate touch of luxe.
Throw in chunks of leftover roast sweet potato, butternut squash or pumpkin with a little sage and parmesan for a super supper.
Trout and kale
Crumble up trout (or mackerel - any smoked fish really) and use up that bag of kale for this simple summer supper.
Baked or grilled salmon is delicious in risotto. With creamy leeks, it’s a match made in foodie heaven.
Main image via Shutterstock: VICUSCHKA
Liked this? Then try these: