Nettle and dandelion risotto

Weed it and reap with this fresh green risotto

Wed, May 8, 2019, 00:00

  • Serves: 4
  • Cooking Time: 40 mins
  • Course: Main Course
  • Cuisine: Irish


  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1 onion, finely diced
  • 300g barley
  • 250ml white wine
  • 600ml stock or water
  • 1-2 large handfuls of young dandelion leaves and nettle tops
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 80ml olive oil
  • Sea salt
  • 1 clove garlic
  • To serve
  • Ardsallagh hard goat’s cheese or Parmesan


Melt the butter in a medium-sized heavy-based pan. Add the onion and cook over a low heat until it is softened and sweet.

Add the barley and stir well to coat the barley in the melted butter. Cook for a minute before adding the wine. Increase the heat a little and stir with a wooden spoon until most of the white wine has been absorbed. Add the stock and lower the heat to a simmer.

Leave to cook for 30-40 minutes until the barley is still slightly al dente but cooked.

Pick over the dandelion leaves and nettles to make sure they are all clean. Wash them well in a colander over the sink then pour boiling water over them. Leave to cool a little then squeeze any excess water off the leaves. Use rubber gloves for this as you may still be stung!

Blitz the wilted leaves, garlic, half a teaspoon of salt, lemon juice and olive oil in a food processor or nutribullet until smooth. Taste and season accordingly. It should be highly seasoned and quite strong as you’ll be coating the barley with it. Pour all of the green puree onto the barley and stir well to combine.

Divide between four bowls. Top with shavings of goat’s cheese and freshly ground black pepper.