That’s a lot of adjectives, but that’s how much I love this dish from Jamie’s Italy by Jamie Oliver (sometimes known as the Naked Chef).
This is one of those dishes that never enters my mind during the warm months. Even now in September a tropical system is sitting on top of us making the air thick with moisture. I won’t be making this any time soon, but I can think about its goodness…especially with roast chicken.
Risotto takes a little patience and preplanning…you’ll want to have all your ingredients measured and chopped before you begin. If you’ve never made risotto before, read the recipe all the way through a couple of times so you know what you’re getting yourself into.
Equipment you’ll need: 2 large pots, 1 ladle
Ingredients you’ll need:
2 pints chicken stock (the better the stock, the better the risotto)
2 T olive oil
2 T butter
3/4 C white or yellow onion, peeled and finely chopped
3/4 C celery, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 cups Aborio rice
2 C dry white wine or dry vermouth
freshly ground black pepper
3 T butter
4 oz freshly grated Parmesean cheese
Heat the stock in one pot to a simmer, turn heat down, but keep warm
1.Put the butter and oil in the other pot. Melt the butter and add the onion, garlic, and celery and cook slowly for about 15 minutes, or until the veggies are soft. Add the rice and turn up the heat.
2. The rice will start to lightly fry, so keep stirring it. After a minute or two, it will start to look slightly transparent. Add the wine and keep stirring…notice the fabulous smell.
3. After the rice has absorbed the wine, add your first ladle full of stock and a pinch of salt. Turn down the heat to a simmer–you don’t want the rice to cook too quickly. Keep stirring. Everytime the liquid is absorbed, add another ladle full of stock. After about 15 minutes, taste the rice…it should be almost (but not completely) soft. Keep adding stock and stirring. If you run out of stock, add boiling water.
4. When the rice is done, remove from the heat and add the remaining butter and cheese…stir well. Put a tight lid on the pan and let sit for two minutes. Enjoy as soon as possible.
This is not really a do-ahead type of dish, but if you want to make it for guests, just invite them into the kitchen while you’re cooking.
I promise that the effort for this dish is worth it.