Risotto with Green Peas


Known by Italians as risi e bisi (bisi means peas in the Venetian dialect), this risotto is based on ingredients I always keep on hand for a last-minute supper. Don’t be fooled by its simplicity: risi e bisi is elegant, colorful, and tasty enough to offer company. Indeed, there is something about the contrast in the textures of the creamy rice and slightly crunchy peas that makes this risotto thoroughly delightful. I especially like to make it with the small frozen green peas called petits pois.

  • 6Servings


  • 2 tsp. olive oil
  • 1 1/2 cups finely chopped leeks or onions
  • 1 1/2 cups uncooked Arborio rice
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine, dry vermouth, or dry sherry
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 tsp. salt or to taste
  • 10-oz. pkg. frozen small green peas (rinse away any ice crystals)
  • 3/4 cup grated Parmesan, plus more to pass at the table
  • 2 tsp. good quality balsamic vinegar, plus more to taste (optional)


Heat oil in pressure cooker over medium-high. When it begins to foam, add leeks and cook 1 minute, stirring frequently. Stir in rice and coat grains with oil. Add wine and cook over high heat, stirring, until it evaporates, about 1 minute. Add broth and salt.

Lock lid in place. Over high heat bring to high pressure. Lower heat to maintain high pressure and cook 5 minutes. Quick-release pressure. Remove lid, tilting it away from you to allow any excess steam to escape.

Boil over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, until rice is tender but still chewy, and risotto becomes creamy and thick, 5 to 6 minutes. During the final minute, stir in the peas and Parmesan. Add balsamic vinegar, if desired, to bring up flavors. Let sit 5 minutes to absorb excess liquid.

Spoon risotto into large shallow bowls and sprinkle with a few twists of black pepper. Pass extra Parmesan at the table.

Nutrition Information

  • Calories: 313
  • Carbohydrate Content: 50 g
  • Cholesterol Content: 10 mg
  • Fat Content: 7 g
  • Fiber Content: 10 g
  • Protein Content: 12 g
  • Saturated Fat Content: 3 g
  • Sodium Content: 30 mg