Monday, November 23, 2009

{cooking} risotto

i'm not sure where my love for risotto came from. my mother, although the most tremendous cook, never cooked risotto. italian food is lost on her. pasta. risotto. parmesan. oh it's terrible just thinking about it!!! don't you think she is missing out on some of life's greatest enjoyments????

oh but risotto: i could write an ode to it. and not only can it make me swoon, but it is also my last-resort meal. the one thing i can cook when there is nothing to eat in the fridge. infact, risotto is the ultimate meal. it can be as simple or as elegant or as fancy as you like.

so, here is my risotto recipe. it's evolved over a few years... many thanks go to ursula ferrigno, curtis stone & jamie oliver for their little hints along the way.

image :: david loftus

 ...the ingredients
1 onion, diced very finely
2 cloves garlic, through a garlic press
1 tbs butter
1 tbs olive oil
1 cup aborio rice
a few cups boiling water
1/2 cup white wine
1 tbs chicken stock powder
multitudes & multitudes of freshly chopped herbs, salt, cracked pepper, parmesaan cheese.

the method...
fry onion and garlic with the butter and oil in a heavy based fry pan. cook until onion is transparent. add in the rice and stir for a minute or so, until rice goes a bit transparent. then add the wine, which will make a lovely bubbly broth for a few seconds until a lot of it evaporates. add in the stock powder here, and add half a cup of boiling water.
stir the risotto once, then let it sit for a few minutes until the water is all taken up. then add another half a cup of water. keep letting it all soak up, then add more... and so on until the rice is cooked until just a little bit crunchy.
here, add lots of freshly chopped herbs, freshly cracked salt and (lots of) pepper, and lots and lots of cheese. if you want to go really over the top, add a little knob of butter (or a tablespoon of cream) and just let the whole thing sit for a minute or two.

serve with an extra crack of pepper, a shredding of cheese, a dash of olive oil and a squeeze of lemon.

and my latest variation-on-a-theme? pan fry some swiss brown mushrooms with plenty of butter, lemon thyme & pepper; and heap on top of the risotto. oh bliss!

what's your last-resort meal?? blog this wanted to know :: go on, you know you want to join in!

and, more importantly, what's in your perfect risotto dish??


Madmother said...

Ah yes, the little dash of cracked pepper. Fancy!

Sounds delish, even to a non-risotto fan like me.

Millie said...

I hope we are going to see you on the next Master Chef auditions - this looks fab! I add lightly blanched asparagus spears & fresh green peas & some cripsy pancetta at the end of my base risotto recipe.
Millie ^_^

Anonymous said...

Yummo, I tend to just make risotto up as I go along. Sometimes it works, sometimes not. Its a dish that I can only have when I am alone as my other half is not a fan.

Bec Hem said...

Millie - love the asparagus idea! am totally going to try that :)

Christie said...

Love risotto and this one looks great. I'm with you on the asparagus Millie, I reckon it makes a risotto!
Thanks for sharing Bec :)

Melissa said...

I love risotto, but have a habit of over-complicating it, trying to add too many veges etc.

And never remembering to have any white wine at home.

Thanks for sharing. Feeling very much like making Risotto Milanese this weekend.

Talia said...

Ooh! This looks so yummy!! My friend Zoey told me a great trick for risotto- cooking it in the rice cooker! (just put your fried off vegies in, rice, and stock (all at once) and put the rice cooker on! When the rice cooker says it's ready, it's delicious!

m.e (Cathie) said...

mmmm, like the mushroom addition. asparagus is fabulous aswell ♥

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