- Arborio rice
- Mushrooms (get wild if you can)
- Parmesan cheese
- White grape juice
There are some dishes that you cook at home and then there are others which you only ever eat when you are out in a fancy restaurant. Risotto is one of the latter. People think it is a massive pain in the backside to make and that it involves some sort of houdini type skills that take years to learn. With the help of some easy instructions and a few nice photos you'll see that it is actually pretty easy and that it tastes awesome.
The thing about risotto is how amazing it tastes even though the ingredients are nothing special.
Start off by boiling a big pot of stock. You could be all fancy and make your own but lets be realistic here and say a couple of cubes is as good as its going to get.
Chop up a crazy load of garlic. Nice and fine
Slice up the shallots. Defo worth getting these instead of regular onions if you can. Big difference taste wise.
Chop up the shrooms. Nice even sized pieces is best because they'll shrink down as soon as they start cooking
Lots of prep to do here at this stage but once you have it all done its time to start actually cooking
Find the biggest heaviest pot you have and put it on a nice low heat and chuck in a big glug of olive oil.
Lash in everything you prepped bar the mushrooms.
You want to cook all these flavours nice and slow. The smell is going to be off the charts good if you do this right and take your time.
You don't want the stuff to be getting any colour. Take it nice and slow. Slower the better because you are building the flavor.
Lash in the shrooms
You can actually turn up the temperature up at this stage a little. But keep it stirred at all times
Once the shrooms have been cooking for a couple of mins lash in the rice. You will not be able to leave this dish for the next 20 minutes so make sure you've gone for a piss and everything else is done because this is about to get serious.
This is a strange one but you want to cook the rice for about a minute or two. Just keep it stirring constantly. Important part of the process this. Don't ask why, just do it.
Lash in about a glass of white grape.
Now this is where things get technical. Basically keep it stirred at all times and wait for the liquid (grape juice) to evaporate. Slowly slowly.
So the stock should have come to the boil at this stage. Lash in 1 ladel of it at a time into the rice.
You are slowly adding a bit of stock every couple of minutes for about 20 until it is fully cooked. The Italians call this process all'onda (in the style of a wave) and it is incredibly important. Always stirring always adding more water.
Nice low heat and you'll see the rice slowly getting thicker and more cook. It all starts to come together like magic after about 15 minutes. Don't over cook it though. Nothing worse.
Lash in a bit of salt and pepper
What really brings a risotto to life is the parmesan. Get the best most expensive one you can and grate a crazy load of it,
Lash it in at the very end when the rice is pretty much 95% cooked
The thing with this dish is you should be tasting it all the time while you cook. Check for seasoning. Check to see if the rice is cooked. Always be tasting.
When it is done it should fall off a spoon just like a really thick soup. You see some restaurants serve it up all stiff and large. Thats not the way to do it. It should be in a bowl and gloopy (Is that even a word?).
This is a simple recipe but you could pimp it out however you wanted. Few more herbs. Some meat or veggies. All we are showing here is a technique and you can make whatever flavour you fancy yourself.
So there you have it. One of the all time great Italian dishes simplified and added to your arsenal. You won't believe just how amazing this tastes and what I love most about it is that it doesn't cost a fortune. You could feed 6 people with this for close to AED 60. You've probably always been worried about cooking anything like this but forget the fear and give it a lash. Amazeballs!