1. Prepare the stock in a saucepan and leave to gently simmer.
2. Heat the oil over a medium heat in a large frying pan and cook the onion and bacon until the bacon is almost crispy. Add the mushrooms and garlic to the pan and cook for a further couple of minutes until everything is tender. Turn the heat down to low if it looks like things are getting a little too brown.
3. Put the rice in the pan and stir through, making sure all the grains are coated.
4. Spoon a couple of ladles of stock over the rice mix and stir until some of the moisture is absorbed. Repeat the process by gradually adding the stock whilst stirring. The grains of rice should slowly expand – continue until they are cooked but still retain some bite and nutty character, what the Italians call Al Dente.
5. Stir through half of the cheese and season with black pepper (don’t be shy with it).
6. Top each serving of the risotto with the remainder of the cheese.
Spruce it up
If you want to add a little colour (and sweetness) then throw a handful or two of defrosted peas in a few minutes before the rice is cooked.