I don’t really know WHEN I made risotto for the first time. It just sort of…happened. My mom bought arborio rice and we figured we’d just follow the instructions on the back and BAM we’d have delicious and authentic risotto.
Lucky for us, we figured right. Risotto is probably one of the easiest dishes to make (and it sounds kind of impressive…) SO ever since, I’ve been the risotto queen, stirring away at the stovetop for three years now (I think), so well-versed in risotto lore that I don’t even use a recipe.
If you’re up for 40 minutes of prep for this delicious side dish (that can double as a main if you add some fun extras), then drag out your large saucepan and get stirring. The quantities written here will make enough for 4 people who really like risotto.
2 tbsp butter
2 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, diced
1 cup arborio rice
4-6 cups chicken OR vegetable broth (I give a large margin because some folks prefer a more al dente risotto.
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
Assorted spices (herbes de provence are my fave)
In a large saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter and the oil and mix together. Add the onion and cook until transparent and just starting to brown on the sides/tips.
Add the cup of rice, stirring constantly to avoid burning the rice. Cook like this for about 2 minutes, or until the rice begins to brown and toasts a bit (it will smell wonderful).
Pour in two cups of broth and keep stirring. The constant movement of the risotto is very important – you are helping to heat it evenly and moderate the starch release, which causes the rice to thicken.
Make sure to taste your rice as it cooks – when it is just a little bit chewy, add the extras – in this case, the parmesan cheese. You can also add tomatoes (like I did in the current batch !) or zucchini orrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr chicken or mushrooms or white wine…the possibilities are endless. :)
Buon appetito !