How to cook Risotto
I’m not Italian. If anything I’m Irish. With names like Dougherty, McLagan, Cochrane and Corliss, you would think so, right? My brother did a bunch of ancestry research and testing. I think it’s safe to say we came back as a Heinz 57 or as my Dad would say, All American – in other words, a little bit of everything! 🙂
So I’m not Italian or Irish. I haven’t traveled abroad extensively. Nope, never been to Italy or learned from the masters (it is on my bucket list!). However, I do feel like I have mastered this dish, but there is a story behind it.
When I got divorced after 22 years of marriage. I was left with all of the bills and next to no income – literally high and dry. Life was tough. I had little money to pay the bills, let alone feed myself, my three dogs and two cats. Family & friends were everything to me and risotto became my meal of comfort.
This was a few years back. Before I was a blogger. (Heck before I even knew what blogging was!) I would make Risotto every Sunday night. It is an easy meal to make, mouthwateringly delicious and very inexpensive too. I could enjoy it for two meals as Risotto and on the third day I would add a ton of vegetables, a bit of rotisserie chicken and chicken stock and it became a delicious soup. That would stretch it out for another couple of days.
It was really all I could afford. Luckily it is an amazingly delicious meal!
Is there a meal that brings you comfort? I’m not sure why this one is “it” for me. Maybe because it brought some sort of structure to my life? (Can food do that?) Maybe because I knew I’d have something good to eat? I’m not sure, but this was always my little treat.
Want to make it a little more fancy? You can always jazz up Risotto by adding a handful of frozen peas and the end along with a few slices of ham. Mushrooms are a delicious additional also. Add sliced mushrooms at the beginning when you sauté the shallots. Truly I think it’s one of the best meals ever!
How to cook Risotto an easy 30 minute meal
- 1 cup arborio rice
- 4 cups chicken stock
- 1/3 cup dry white wine
- 1 shallot
- 1 clove garlic
- 1 cup parmesan cheese couple tablespoons reserved for garnish
- 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 tablespoons butter divided
- Add the chicken stock to a deep pan over medium heat.
- Mince the shallot and the clove of garlic.
- In a large fry pan over medium heat, add the olive oil and 1 1/2 tablespoon butter. Heat until hot & bubbly. Add the shallot and sauté for a couple of minutes to soften the shallot. Add the garlic and stir until fragrant, only about 30 seconds. Next Add the rice. Stir the rice to evenly coat all the kernels of rice with the olive oil & butter. Add in the wine and cook until it is nearly all absorbed. Then add two ladlefuls of chicken stock. Cook and stir the rice and only add liquid when most of the liquid has been absorbed and the pan is nearly dry.
- It will take about 6-7 minutes between each addition and you'll need to continue to stir it while the rice is sautéing. Taste test the rice after about 15 minutes into the cooking process and a couple of times thereafter. You'll want the rice to be tender, but have a bite. It will take about 22 minutes from start to finish.
- When the rice is tender, remove from heat and stir in the Parmesan cheese and additional 1 1/2 tablespoons of butter. Mix well to combine. Garnish with reserved Parmesan cheese and chives or thinly sliced basil and serve!