Sunday, May 31, 2009

Basic Risotto

Another recipe from


2 tbsp. minced shallots or 1/4 c. minced onions
olive oil & butter
2 1/2 – 3 cups stock (see note in cooking instructions)
1 cup Arborio rice
1/4 cup white wine
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese


In a small saucepan over high heat, bring the stock to a boil. Reduce the heat to simmer & keep the liquid hot.

In a sauté pan over medium heat, sauté onions in 1 tbsp. each butter & oil, stirring occasionally, until onions become translucent & slightly golden–about 5–8 minutes.

Add the rice & stir constantly until all the rice is slightly translucent and a white spot appears in the center of the grain–about 3 minutes.

Turn up the heat, pour in the wine & stir until it is absorbed–about 2 minutes. Set the timer for 20 minutes now. The timer is only an approximate measure. The rice should only be cooked until it is tender but still chewy (firm to the bite or "al dente"), but never so long that it is soft in the center.

Add just enough hot stock to cover the rice, stir well, and reduce the heat so it cooks "at a lively pace". Keep gently stirring the sides and bottom of the pot until the rice has incorporated all the broth. This should take about 3–4 minutes. Season w/ salt & pepper.

Continue to add the hot broth, little by little, stirring continuously until at least 2 cups of the broth has been absorbed & the rice is cooked, about 18–20 minutes in all.

NOTE: When this was first posted, a lot of people said that needed more stock. Be careful, especially if you’re using canned or salted stock. All the cookbooks say 2 1/2 to 3 cups stock, so try to adjust the heat until it takes 20 minutes to absorb 3 cups of stock.

Hint: As the risotto nears completion, gradually reduce the amount of liquid you add at each time, so when it is fully cooked, it is only slightly moist–no liquid should be left unabsorbed at the end.

Stir in half of cheese and 1 more tbsp. butter & cook, stirring constantly, for 1–2 minutes. Take off the heat & salt to taste.

Serve immediately with fresh ground pepper & the remaining cheese sprinkled on top.

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