Radishes Risotto with Monkfish and Pancetta

I liked pasta with radishes, so I thought I’d try risotto with radishes as well. The pasta with radishes seemed to need a little pancetta, and since pancetta is also good with monkfish I decided to combine the three of them. And it worked! I cooked the monkfish sous-vide, but if you don’t have sous-vide equipment you could just pan-fry the monkfish, being careful not to overcook it.


For 2 servings

225 grams (1/2 pound) monkfish fillet

80 grams (3 oz) pancetta, thinly sliced

1 bunch radishes with nice-looking leaves

2/3 cup risotto rice such as Arborio

2 cups home-made fish stock

1 glass (100 ml) dry white wine

1 shallot

1/2 lemon

salt and freshly ground white pepper

5 Tbsp butter


Cut the roots and the greens off the radishes and wash them. Use only the leaves from the greens and wash those as well, washing twice or until there is no sand left.

Cut the radishes into halves and then into thin slices. Keep 2 slices of pancetta and chop the rest. Chop the shallot.

Heat the fish stock and keep it simmering.

Cut the monk fish into two slices (about 1 cm (3/8″) thick), season with salt and freshly ground white pepper and cover with a slice of pancetta.

Cook sous-vide for 15 minutes at 52C/125F (you can skip this step if you don’t have sous-vide equipment).

Meanwhile, heat 2 Tbsp butter in a thick-bottomed frying pan. Sauté the shallot and the radishes until both are translucent.

Add the rice and toast the rice for a few minutes.

When the edges of the rice are translucent, add the wine and stir until the wine has evaporated.

Add a ladle of simmering fish stock and keep stirring and adding more fish stock, ladle by ladle, until you have used all the fish stock and rice is cooked al dente, about 16-18 minutes.

Take the risotto off the heat. Add 1 Tbsp of fresh lemon juice and 1 Tbsp of butter in small pieces and stir until the butter has melted.

Heat 2 Tbsp butter in a non-stick frying pan. Sear the fish quickly on both sides, pancetta side first. If you did not cook the fish sous-vide, pan-fry for a few minutes on each side until the fish is just cooked.

Take the fish out of the pan and cover loosely with aluminum foil to keep warm.

In the same pan, sauté the leaves from the radishes…

…until they are wilted.

Serve the risotto on warm plates with the wilted leaves around and the fish on top, with a slice of lemon.

Wine pairing

The dish is both fresh and creamy and thus goes well with a dry Italian white that is also fresh and creamy, such as a Fiano di Avellino like we had with it.


5 thoughts on “Radishes Risotto with Monkfish and Pancetta

  1. One of the many things I have yet to master is thinking in terms of using the whole plant when cooking (such as fennel, radishes, beets, etc.) I tend to be quite wasteful…
    You, on the other hand, are a very “holistic” chef!


    1. For radishes I picked this up from another blog. At Torre del Saracino in Campania we got zucchini soup using the whole plant – I’ve never seen it sold like that and even the flowers are hard to find here.


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