Risotto: A Versatile Italian Recipe

risottoRisotto is a very popular Italian recipe of a hearty rich rice dish packed with
flavors. There are few dishes as versatile as this. This Italian Recipe
is very nutritious and can be cooked to suit different tastes. It is
known to be a staple food in the Italian diet, but is well liked around
the world. You can prepare this scrumptious dish with a selection of
ingredients such as cuttlefish ink, asparagus, mushrooms, quail,
pumpkin, truffles, snails, scallops, lobster, veal, squid ink, duck,
sausage and almost anything else.

What is the origin of this Italian icon?

The
history of this dish is tied to the history of rice in Italy. There are
several conflicting opinions on the historical details but rice was
initially used in Italy during the Middle Ages by the Arabs. Risotto was
a great way of cooking short grained rice. The starch of the grain
combined with the stock created a luscious creamy sauce.

Mushroom Risotto Recipe

Ingredients:

Butter – 2 Tbsp
Mushrooms (shiitake, oyster mushrooms or chanterelle) – 2 cups (cleaned, trimmed and diced into half inch pieces)
Brandy, dry white wine or vermouth – 2/3 cup
Chicken stock (vegetable stock for vegetarians) – 5-6 cups
Shallots – 1/3 cup minced or 1/3 cup finely sliced onion
Arborio rice – 1 3/4 cups
Parmesan cheese – 1/3 cup (grated)
Salt and ground black pepper- to taste
Chopped chives or parsley- 2 Tbsp

Method:

1. Simmer the stock in a saucepan.

2.
Take a heavy bottom deep saucepan and melt the butter over medium heat.
Add shallots and mushrooms and stir fry for approximately 5 minutes.
Put in the rice and stir to mix.

3. Pour in brandy and allow it to boil till the liquid is reduced to half. It will take 3-5 minutes.

4.
Pour in the simmering stock, 1/2 cup at one time, while stirring it to
ensure that the rice does not stick to the sides of the pan. Keep
stirring the rice constantly, to get creamy sauce you want in your
risotto. Allow the stock to get absorbed almost fully before pouring the
next half cup. This process normally takes 25- 30 minutes. The rice
should be slightly chewy and just cooked.

5. Mix in the Parmesan cheese and seasoning and garnish the dish with fresh chopped chives and parsley.

This tasty Italian Recipe will serve 4-6 people