Leek and goat's cheese risotto is the perfect light dinner for a spring night. It's creamy and comforting, bursting with flavours from fresh herbs. Serve this spring leek risotto with toasted pine nuts on top for a delicious vegetarian treat.
Spring is here (well, at least it's supposed to be here, but Scotland seems to be exempt), and what better way to celebrate than with a creamy risotto bursting with spring veggies?
This leek and goat's cheese risotto is bright and fresh and makes a perfect meatless dinner for those nights all you want is a treat and a glass of white wine.
I like this risotto that's inspired by risotto primavera because it leaves room for creativity and improvisation. You can make it with any spring veggies you want, with courgettes, asparagus, and snap peas all being great options.
A risotto with fresh spring vegetables is great on its own, but add to it the tang of goat's cheese, and you have a real winner.
Ingredients you'll need for goat's cheese risotto
To make this moreish goat's cheese risotto, you only need a handful of ingredients. I make it with just leeks and petit pois, but you can add some other veggies if you want, such as asparagus spears or courgettes, if you like.
You need soft goat's cheese for this risotto, the type that melts completely when you add it to the risotto. It's the kind of goat cheese that has a spreadable texture and a tangy flavour.
Carnaroli rice is the best choice for risotto, as it has the perfect texture that remains al dente while resulting in a creamy risotto at the same time. You can substitute it with Arborio rice, which will also yield super creamy results, but won't retain its shape just as well.
What is the best wine for risotto?
If you're wondering that's the best white wine for cooking risotto, the answer is a dry and crisp one. Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, and Pinot Grigio are alls great options that will improve the depth of the risotto. I typically use Pinot Grigio, as it's a neutral wine with a clean and crisp taste.
How do you make goat's cheese risotto?
Risotto can be a labour of love, but this one only takes about 45 minutes from start to finish. It's not a dish that you can walk away from, but you can definitely treat yourself with a glass of white wine while stirring and adding ladle after ladle of stock. When you think like that, making risotto is quite fun.
To make this creamy leek risotto, you start by sauteeing the leek in a bit of olive oil until slightly softened. Then add the garlic and continue to cook for another minute until fragrant, then stir in the fresh thyme.
Next, add the rice and toast it for 1-2 minutes. Turn up the heat and pour the white wine. Cook for 1-2 minutes until the alcohol evaporates, then start adding the stock, one ladle at a time. Cook for 15-20 minutes, stirring continually until all the stock is absorbed and the rice is al dente. Stir in the petit pois with the last ladle of stock.
Lower the heat and stir in the goat's cheese. When the cheese has melted, stir in the Parmesan and then season to taste. Serve with extra goat's cheese on top and toasted pine nuts, if you like.
Recipe Notes and tips
- You can add a dash of lemon juice with the peas if you want a zesty touch for your risotto.
- To make the risotto extra creamy, you can add a knob of butter at the end before adding the Parmesan.
- Never wash the rice you're using for risotto, as this will remove the starches that make the risotto creamy.
- Don't rush the risotto by turning on the heat because you'll ruin the texture, and you may end up with undercooked rice.
If you enjoyed this leek and goat's cheese risotto, you might also like some of my other risotto recipes:
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 medium leek, trimmed and finely chopped
- 2 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon fresh thyme
- 250 g (9 oz) Carnaroli rice
- 75 ml (2.5 fl oz) dry white wine
- 1 litre (4 cups) vegetable stock
- 100 g (3.5) frozen petit pois
- 125 g (4.5 oz) soft goat's cheese, plus extra for serving
- 30 g (1 ounce) grated Parmesan
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 30 g (1 ounce) pine nuts, toasted, for serving (optional)
- Heat the olive oil in a large pan or Dutch oven and saute the leek for 5-6 minutes on medium heat until it softens. Add the garlic and continue to cook for another minute until fragrant, then stir in the fresh thyme.
- Next, add the rice and toast it for 1-2 minutes. Turn up the heat and pour the white wine. Cook for 1-2 minutes until the alcohol evaporates, then start adding the stock, one ladle at a time. Cook for 15-20 minutes, stirring continually, until all the stock is absorbed and the rice is al dente. Stir in the petit pois with the last ladle of stock.
- Lower the heat and stir in the goat's cheese. When the cheese has melted, stir in the Parmesan and then season to taste. Serve with extra goat's cheese on top and toasted pine nuts, if you like.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 319Total Fat: 18gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 9gCholesterol: 21mgSodium: 988mgCarbohydrates: 26gFiber: 1gSugar: 2gProtein: 12g
Nutritional information is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator.