a classic white risotto (i.e. risotto with no frills or added ingredients) was the first dish that i ever really ‘mastered’. i first cooked it about three years ago sticking religiously to the recipe in jamie oliver’s ‘italian’ cookbook, and since then it’s become my go-to dish and a firm favourite in our house. here’s the recipe…
ingredients (serves 3-4):
1 white onion
300g arborio risotto rice
glass of white wine
1 litre chicken stock
two handfuls of grated parmesan cheese
1. boil the kettle, and make up a litre of chicken stock in a saucepan. set over a low heat to keep warm.
2. finely dice one large white onion, and cook slowly in some garlic oil over a medium heat until soft and translucent.
3. add in the rice, and stir to disperse amongst the onion.
4. pour in the glass of white wine, and turn up the heat to cook off the harsh alcohol flavour.
5. when the wine has reduced, add in your first ladleful of stock. stir the risotto continuously, until the stock has all been absorbed.
6. keep adding in stock ladleful at a time and keep stirring, until the rice is completely cooked. if you run out of stock but the rice is still slightly underdone, just pour in splashes of boiling water from the kettle until the rice is ready.
7. when the rice is cooked, turn off the heat and add in the butter and parmesan. stir to combine, put the lid on, and leave it for a couple of minutes. the cheese and butter will melt, and it will and get creamy and oozy!
8. after a couple of minutes season the risotto to taste, then devour with gusto.
if you’d like to add in any extra ingredients such as mushrooms, asparagus, leek and bacon, or butternut squash (a few of my favourites) i tend to cook them right at the beginning and then set them aside to be added back in at the end. i find this stops them overcooking, and in the case of asparagus, losing their colour.
p.s. a couple of people have asked so i should add that my ma is absolutely fine- the tree (thankfully!) fell straight down into her garden avoiding the house, garage, greenhouse, all three cats, and most importantly, mum herself! :)