Risotto With Pesto and Peas

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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 40 min
  • Prep: 20 min
  • Cook: 20 min
  • Yield: 4 servings
  • Nutrition Info
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Kosher salt

3 leeks (white and light green parts only), thinly sliced 

2 tablespoons unsalted butter

1 cup arborio rice

1/2 cup dry white wine (optional)

1 cup frozen peas, thawed

3/4 cup diced ham

3/4 cup prepared pesto 

1 cup small fresh mozzarella balls or diced fresh mozzarella

1/2 cup grated Parmesan 


  1. Make the broth: Bring 6 cups water and 1 teaspoon salt to a simmer in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the leeks and cook until tender, 3 to 4 minutes; remove with a slotted spoon to a bowl. Adjust the heat to keep the broth at a gentle simmer. 
  2. Meanwhile, heat 1 tablespoon butter in a wide saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the rice and cook, stirring, 1 minute. Add the wine and cook, stirring, until almost evaporated, about 1 more minute. 
  3. Add 2 cups of the hot leek broth to the rice; cook, stirring occasionally, until almost absorbed, about 6 minutes (adjust the heat to keep the risotto at a simmer). Add 1 more cup broth and cook, stirring, until almost absorbed, about 5 more minutes. Add the leeks, peas and 1 more cup broth and cook, stirring, until almost absorbed, about 5 more minutes. Taste the rice: If it is not fully cooked, add a little more broth and continue to cook, stirring, until al dente. 
  4. Stir in the ham and remaining 1 tablespoon butter. Remove from the heat; stir in 2/3 cup pesto, the mozzarella and Parmesan. Season with salt. Divide among bowls and top with the remaining pesto.  

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