Thursday, 20 August 2009

Bacon and Pea Risotto

I had to try to get rid of the cheese and bacon that has been slowly making themselves at home in my fridge. In some deep recess of my mind was this recipe which lo and behold, would use up the rest of the bacon and cheese. In the process of putting this together I've rediscovered one Basics item, and found two new ones.

The Commando Survival Manual states that herbs and spices are vital when living for extended periods of time outdoors, as they sustain morale by enlivening your rations or foraged food. Sad to say, the same can be said of living off cheaper food. And so, the Basics Herb Mix is a godsend. Never mind that it is mostly made of thyme, it still makes food taste just that little bit more bearable. I would have gotten this earlier, if not for lack of availability, and I still have fond memories of this seeing me through my third year of university.

This was a random photo I took of me using the herbs on some pasta just yesterday, to give you an idea of what the contents of the herbs look like.

Risotto usually calls for some sort of meat stock to boil the rice. The Basics range do not cover stock cubes, so I tried an alternative using chicken soup and the liquid from the processed peas can. What a terrible idea. This may have been the first time that I've encountered them, but the low chicken content in the soup should have set off warning bells.

Chicken soup contents. This will probably be the worst item I've had from the Basics range so far. At least the beef mince tasted good, if sinful, from its high fat content. This on the other hand tasted far too salty, and would turn out to be the item that single-handedly ruined the dish.

Once all ingredients are prepared, brown the onion, cook the bacon, and then fry the unwashed rice in the wok. Ensure the rice is well coated with oil, then season with pepper and herbs.

Add the peas, and then slowly add the microwaved chicken soup mixed with the water that comes in the canned peas. I used a tablespoon to add two spoonfuls at a time before a little stir. Eventually I got tired and poured the rest in and left it to boil.

After a while, add in shaved cheese to thicken the mixture, and stir. Turn off the stove and allow the entire thing to cook from the residual heat.

DescriptionPrice per UnitNo. of servingsTrade-up PremiumTrade-up Benefits
Herb Mix£0.23many+£0.51Wider range of flavours and smells. Recommended.
Creamed Chicken Soup£0.171+£0.27Better tasting soup. Recommended.
Processed Peas£0.12300g+£0.16None discernible

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