recipe has been reproduced with the kind permission
of Pierre Beghin. Pierre runs hands-on cookery
classes in Islington - la cuisine de Pierre.
Each class features a complete lunch or dinner menu
with three seasonal recipes that can easily be prepared
by those new to cooking. A chance to learn the art of
entertaining "à la française"
I was about five or six, I had to stand on a chair to
peek inside the pots and pans to see what my mother
was cooking. A few years later, I used to invite friends
around to make crêpes on Wednesdays . . ."
Beghin - patient, unflappable and a marvellous
Gold - The Times
left feeling like I was halfway to becoming
a domestic goddess and much more confident
about my cooking abilities".
Milne - Islington Gazette
a few hours, Pierre managed to convince me
that cooking a meal from scratch is tastier
and more enjoyable than reaching for a ready
meal - it really is a great way to unwind".
Caroline Jones - Top Santé, Health
generous pinches of saffron threads
250 ml hot chicken stock
1 medium onion
2.25 litres chicken stock
450g Italian rice (Arborio, Carnaroli, Vialone Nano,
Roma or Balso)
250 ml dry white wine
Salt and ground black pepper
2 tbsps olive oil
in a large, heavy saucepan over medium heat 45g butter.
Stir in 1 medium onion and 2 shallots, finely chopped.
Cook over low heat until soft and clear.
simmer over medium heat 2.25 litres chicken stock.
the heat under the onions to medium and add 450g Italian
rice. Cook, stirring often, until the rice is chalky
in appearance, about 5 minutes. Add 125ml dry white
wine. Stir until absorbed. Add the saffron mixture
and simmer, uncovered, stirring often, until absorbed.
Add the chicken stock, 250ml at a time, and simmer
and stir continuously until absorbed.
chunks of fish, shellfish or vegetables for the last
5 to 10 minutes of cooking.
saffron is optional. Tomato is a good addition along
with parsley and other fresh herbs.
the remaining stock, 250ml at a time, until the rice
is tender but still has some "bite". It should be
creamy and not stiff.
with salt and ground black pepper to taste. Let rest
for a few minutes, then serve in warmed soup dishes.
serve with Grated Parmesan cheese - traditionally cheese
is not used with fish)
or vegetable stock can be substituted for the chicken
stock. Another approach is to sauté chunks of
seafood with flavourings (garlic, shallot, herbs, wine,
etc) until almost completely cooked, then stir this
in at the end of the cooking time.