Recipe/ Sides/ Vegetarian

Spring Pea & Fava Bean Risotto: Peaing All Over the Place

What up, bitches! (and by bitches, I mean super amazing lovely loves whom I ADORE!)…
Spring Risotto Recipe
I’ll be honest… No shame in it… Not at all… I have a small bladder.
Seriously. I pee more often than most people, I think. Tea goes right through me, I rarely make it through a movie without hitting pause and I regularly have to get up to piddle in the middle of the night.
Vegetarian Risotto with Peas and Fava Beans
Vegetarian Risotto
In fact, when John and I go camping I have to sneak out of the tent in the middle of the night with our piece-of-shit-wind-up flashlight and duck behind the tent in the bush, hoping the entire time that a cougar or bear doesn’t have the very same idea as I do at that very same moment.
When John teases me about it I often blame the fact that I wear tights and that they constantly cinch and push on my stomach. 
…Though I suppose that doesn’t apply whilst camping.
Fresh Spring Peas
Yes. I pee a lot. But I also drink a lot of tea. And water. And wine. And bourbon. And even a cosmopolitan or brown cow from time to time. So of course I pea a lot! Better to be extra hydrated than dehydrated, I say.
Speaking of pee, how about peas? They’re “rolling” into season right now and there really isn’t anything much better than fresh shucked sweet peas from the garden. Unless of course, you have fresh shucked fava beans from the farmer’s market. Yes. The other day I had both of them in my fridge so I jumped (or knowing my bladder, waddled) into the kitchen to make a Spring has sprung risotto with my two favorite seasonal legumes.
Fresh Legumes
I fondly remember sitting on my parent’s back deck growing up shucking peas and the klunky rolling sound they made in the tupperware bowls as we dropped them in. I think we ate more than we saved. Funny, I had that same issue this past weekend, sitting in my living room, plucking the little green gems out of their shells. And then I tossed them into a seasonal Spring Pea Risotto that showcased everything that’s great about Spring. Tasty little fuckers.

Fresh Fava Bean Risotto

Spring Pea & Fava Bean Risotto

Yield 6 servings


  • 1 C Fresh Shelling Peas.
  • 1 C Fresh Fava Beans, shelled & shucked.
  • 1 C Arborio Rice.
  • 1 C Parmesan Cheese, grated.
  • 2 Shallots, thinly sliced.
  • 2 Garlic Cloves, thinly sliced.
  • 3 Tbsp Butter, unsalted.
  • 3/4 C Dry White Wine.
  • 5-6 C Chicken or Veggie Stock, well heated.
  • Fresh Parsley, roughly chopped.
  • Kosher Salt and Fresh Cracked Black Pepper.


  1. On a medium-low heat, melt 2 Tbsp of butter in large pan and add shallots and garlic, season lightly with salt. Saute 5 minutes, stirring often.
  2. Add rice, stirring until grains become slightly clear and golden on the outside, approximately 2 min.Gently pour in the wine, stir well, and allow for absorption by the rice and evaporation of the alcohol.
  3. Next ladle in enough stock to just cover the rice mixture and allow for a low simmer, stirring fairly regularly to avoid burning and encourage creaminess. Continue adding further ladles of broth as it gets absorbed, again only as much as is needed to cover the rice.
  4. This will continue for roughly 30 mins, or until rice mixture is creamy and has reached the desired texture. You want it to be soft and oozy but still hold it's texture and not be mushy.
  5. When you figure you've got about 5 minutes (one more covering of stock) left, stir in the peas.
  6. Once it has reached the desired texture dump in the Parmesan cheese, parsley, fava beans, about a Tbsp of butter, and a good dose of pepper. Stir well.
  7. Oh yes. Eat.

*Get instructions on how to shell fava beans here

What do you think, TMI?  Do you have any childhood food memories? What’s your favorite Spring ingredient? Have you had fresh fava beans? Worth the effort of shelling them? Peas?
  • Amy
    May 13, 2013 at 3:20 PM

    Your posts always crack me up. The camping peeing bit was the BEST. And this recipe looks deliscious! These photos are amazing.

    • Kristy Gardner
      May 13, 2013 at 8:26 PM

      Thank you doll! ….I crack myself up too.

  • saltedplates
    May 13, 2013 at 5:43 PM

    I am constantly peeing too! You are not alone

  • Kirsten
    May 13, 2013 at 6:37 PM

    My brother’s old apartment in Copenhagen had the tiniest bathroom (you could brush your teeth and open the door while sitting down). To brighten it up, they encourages guests to write on the walls. (Easy to do, every wall was within reach!). Most of the comments were in Danish, but the one I could read, and still remember, was
    “tea makes me pee”

    Your risotto looks lovely, Kristy! If the varmit doesn’t stop nibbling on my pea plants, perhaps I’ll have some this spring.

    • Kristy Gardner
      May 13, 2013 at 8:27 PM

      hahahaha – that’s hilarious! And a GREAT idea!!! I’m so gonna write on my walls 🙂

  • Sam
    May 14, 2013 at 9:53 PM

    Ooo…I just came across local favas at the grocery store down the street and I was thinking about putting them into some risotto with a few other spring green things (asparagus etc) that I picked up at the market. Clearly, it’s a good idea. I hope mine turns out as good as yours looks!

    Also, you absolutely crack me up.

    • Kristy Gardner
      May 15, 2013 at 9:25 PM

      I’m giving you a giant smile right now because of your comments. YOU crack ME up 🙂

  • Meghan@CleanEatsFastFeets
    May 15, 2013 at 1:05 AM

    My bladder is the size of a pea so I’m peeing all the time too. I can’t even remember the last time I made it through the night without having to go to the loo. I’m not British, but I sure do like the way it sounds. I’m also terrified of public restrooms which is kind of a problem when you have a small bladder.
    TMI aside, this risotto sounds like the bomb and I have a bunch of Arborio Rice. Game on.

    • Kristy Gardner
      May 15, 2013 at 9:26 PM

      Why are you afraid of public restrooms??

      also, haha – your pee is in a pea!

    • Meghan@CleanEatsFastFeets
      June 4, 2013 at 10:49 AM

      Half the time, they are poorly lit which makes me think they are hiding something (I don’t need bathroom ambiance) and usually someone has peed all over the toilet seat (we have no manners here) so it ends up being gross. Sometimes however I am pleasantly surprised by the cleanliness of bathrooms. Usually though, my fear is well placed.

    • Kristy Gardner
      June 9, 2013 at 11:39 AM

      true that sister. I’m not going to complain if there’s hand lotion and nice cloth towels for my hands – but I do like to see where I pee. There’s one bar in Victoria where the ground is so wet with – uhhhhh – your shoes slosh through it. Granted, it’s a men’s room, but still. Gross.