Saturday, 24 March 2012

Risotto

My mother never cooked a risotto for me. Risotto is an Italian rice dish that is kind of creamy and oozy. It tastes very nice and like with pasta, you can have it in many different ways. Maybe one or two years ago I made risotto for the first time myself. The start is always the same: you heat up some oil slightly and put a chopped onion and a few celery sticks finely chopped. After 15 minutes or so you add the risotto rice (maybe 500-600 g). It  is a special Italian rice - Arborio is one of it. This kind of rice can absorb the liquid better releases starch better, so we can get this sticky creamy thing we desire. 
Right after that you add about 250 ml of white wine or white vermouth. When most of the alcohol has evaporated you can add chicken or vegetable stock. It's best to have it heated up in a separate pot. One litre would be sufficient. You add the stock ladle by ladle, waiting in between until the rice has absorbed the liquid. You do this until all stock is gone or the rice has the right consistency. 
When this is done you can remove the risotto from the heat, add 100 g of butter a handful of grated parmesan cheese and the special ingredients you want to have in your risotto. Today I had it with 200 g Gorgonzola cheese, 80 g goat cheese, and two apples in small chunks. You can season as well with salt and pepper if you need. All went into the pan and covered with the lit it was left standing for a minute or two so that all can melt nicely - or you say sit.
Time to bring it to the plate. A few lightly toasted walnuts on it and some extra parmesan grated on top.


Well I took the recipe for this risotto from the book "Cook with Jamie" (well it would be one down, if I would try to cook through the whole book). You can find the recipe also here: http://www.jamieoliver.com/recipes/risotto/apple-walnut-risotto-with-gorgonzola.
This was just one kind of risotto. There is much more to explore.

 Bacon and beans risotto

Tomato and basil risotto

And there are many many more options. Just have a go. You will not regret it. By the way, in Italy risotto is normally not a main course, but a first course, a primo. However, do as you please!

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