Lemon risotto

Nigella Lawson's lemon risotto is a rich and creamy recipe made with shallots, celery, rosemary, cream and parmesan
By Nigella Lawson
Lemon risotto
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 2-4 as a main, 6-8 as a starter
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Effort: easy



  • 2 shallots
  • 1 stick of celery
  • 60 g unsalted butter
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 300 g risotto rice
  • 1 litres vegetable stock
  • ½ unwaxed lemons, juice and zest
  • 2 sprigs rosemary, leaves picked and finely chopped, plus extra to garnish
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 4 tbsp parmesan, grated, plus more to sprinkle
  • 60 ml double cream


1. Put the shallots and celery into a food processor and blitz until they are a finely chopped mush.

2. Heat half the butter, the oil and the shallot and celery mixture in a wide saucepan, and cook, to soften the mixture, for about 5 minutes, making sure it doesn't brown.

3. Mix in the rice, stirring to give it a good coating of oil and butter.

4. Heat the stock in another saucepan and keep it at simmering point.

5. Pour in a ladle full of the stock into the rice and keep stirring until the stock is absorbed. Then add another ladle full and stir again, continue doing this until the rice is al dente. You may not need all of the stock, equally, you may need to add hot water from the kettle.

6. Mix the lemon zest and the rosemary into the risotto, and in a small bowl beat the egg yolk, lemon juice, parmesan, cream and a pinch of black pepper.

7. When the risotto is ready - when the rice is no longer chalky but still has some bite - take it off the heat and add the bowl of eggy lemony mixture, and the remaining butter and season with salt to taste. Serve with more grated parmesan if you wish, check the seasoning and dive in.

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