- 450-500ml/16-18fl oz chicken or vegetable stock, more if needed
Chicken's many plus points - its versatility, as well as the ease and speed with which it…
- 85g butter
Butter is made when lactic-acid producing bacteria are added to cream and churned to make an…
- 1 medium onion, chopped
Onions are endlessly versatile and an essential ingredient in countless recipes. Native to Asia…
- 200g round grain risotto rice, such as arborio or carnaroli
To create an authentic creamy Italian risotto, the use of specialist rice is imperative. It…
- 500ml red wine, a merlot is ideal
- grated Parmesan (or vegetarian alternative), to serve
Parmesan is a straw-coloured hard cheese with a natural yellow rind and rich, fruity flavour. It…
Heat the stock in a saucepan and keep it warm at the side of the stove. Melt half the butter in a shallow saucepan or casserole, add the onion with salt and pepper and sauté for 5-7 minutes until soft, but not browned. Stir in the rice and sauté it, stirring constantly, until it absorbs the butter, about 2 minutes.
Stir in about half the wine with a little salt and pepper and simmer, stirring, until the rice starts to dry, 5-7 minutes. Add a couple of ladlefuls of hot stock and continue simmering, stirring gently but constantly. When the rice dries again and needs more liquid, add the remaining wine.
Continue cooking, stirring all the time and adding more stock in batches. At the end of cooking, the rice should be tender, still slightly al dente (chewy) and creamy from the starch that has begun to leach from the grains. This will take 25 to 35 minutes and don’t hesitate to use plenty of stock.
Take the risotto from the heat, add the remaining butter in pieces, and stir it into the rice as it melts. Taste and adjust the seasoning. Serve the risotto in shallow bowls or on deep plates with a sprinkling of Parmesan. It is best served at once, though it can be kept warm for a few minutes. If necessary, soften it with a little more stock just before serving.