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Risotto with Fiddleheads, Favas and Snow Peas

  • Author: Isabelle Boucher (Crumb)
  • Total Time: 40 mins
  • Yield: 4 1x


  • 1/2 lb fresh fiddleheads
  • 1/2 lb fava beans, shelled
  • 4 1/2 cups chicken or vegetable broth
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium shallot, minced
  • 2 cups Arborio rice
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 1 cup snow peas, trimmed and cut into thin strips
  • Zest of one lemon
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan
  • Salt and pepper


  1. Prepare the fiddleheads by brushing lightly to remove brown scales, then trimming off any woody stems. Wash well under cold running water to remove dirt before cooking.
  2. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add fiddleheads to the boiling water and cook for 10 minutes. Drain, then plunge immediately into an ice bath. Once cool, place in a small bowl and set aside.
  3. Meanwhile, blanch the shelled favas for 4 minutes. Drain, then plunge into an ice bath. Once cool enough to handle, gently peel away the leathery outer skins. Add to the fiddleheads.
  4. In a small saucepan, bring the stock to a simmer over low heat. Cover and keep warm.
  5. In a large saucepan over medium heat, saute shallot in olive oil until translucent, about 4 minutes. Add the rice and cook, stirring constantly, until evenly coated with oil, about 2 minutes. Immediately add the wine, and cook until the liquid is absorbed, continuing to stir as you go.
  6. Begin stirring in the warm broth, adding it one ladleful at a time. Wait for the first ladleful of broth to be almost fully absorbed before adding the next, stirring frequently to keep risotto from sticking to the pot. Repeat this process until all the broth has been added to the pot, which should take about 25-30 minutes.
  7. Stir in the reserved fiddleheads and fava beans, along with the snow peas. Continue cooking until vegetables are warmed through and risotto is soft and creamy.
  8. Remove from heat and stir in lemon zest and Parmesan. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve right away.
  9. (Risotto doesn't reheat very well, so if you do have any leftovers, you really ought to make some risotto cakes instead. Just shape the cold risotto into small patties about 3/4" thick, dredge in eggs and seasoned panko breadcrumbs, and then pan-fry in olive oil over medium-high heat until golden and crispy. Serve with a fresh green salad for a ridiculously simple and delicious meal.)
  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Cook Time: 30 mins
  • Category: Main