Rice with Peas and Artichokes

(“Riso con Piselli e Carciofi” - “Risu chi Piseddi e Cacocciuli”)



This dish is not a sophisticated risotto, it is rice cooked with peas and artichokes prepared as was in the old days before cream, and butter or other refined ingredients became required components in today’s cooking. It takes about 10 minutes to prep, and about 30 minutes of total cooking time. We strongly suggest the use of frozen peas and frozen artichoke hearts because the fresh peas are rarely available in markets and the frozen artichoke hearts are always tender, handy and ready to cook. If we use fresh artichokes, cook and sauté them separately and add when rice is almost cooked.






  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 6 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 1 clove of garlic, whole
  • 1 lb. Arborio rice
  • 1 package frozen peas
  • 1 package frozen artichoke hearts
  • ½ cup of parsley, finely chopped
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 20 treads of saffron, crushed and diluted in 2 tablespoons of water
  • 1 cup of grated pecorino or caciocavallo cheese
  • 4 ½ to 5 cups of hot water



Rice with Peas & Artichokes

A pot of boiling water has to be kept on the side, because it will be needed in this preparation.  In a 6 quart sauce pot, over a high heat, place 3 tablespoons of oil with the onion and sauté for 4 minutes. Add garlic clove and cook for 1 minute; stir in rice and sauté for 2 minutes to coat with oil.
Add the frozen peas and the artichokes and salt and pepper to taste. Add 
4 ½ cups of hot water, ¼ cup of parsley and the saffron; bring to a boil and simmer covered for 20 minutes, at a low heat, stirring occasionally.
If it becomes too dry add some hot water. 
When time is up, test for doneness; rice should be soft but not overcooked. If necessary cook rice until tender and most of the liquid is absorbed. Discard garlic and if needed, add more salt and some freshly grounded black pepper. Remove from heat, and blend in half of the cheese, the remaining parsley and the 3 tablespoons of oil.
Wait a few minutes before dishing it out. Serve with grated cheese on the side.