With this technique, that is used by
restaurant chefs, you never have to stand at the stove, stirring,
for 20 minutes while your guests wonder where you have gone.
You can make any kind of risotto you want using the below method.
A standard recipe of 4 servings
uses 5 cups liquid (wine, broth, water, etc.) to 1 1/2 cups Arborio
Prepare your risotto according
to your recipe, but use only 3 1/4 cups liquid (reserving the
remaining 1 3/4 cups for when you are ready to finish the risotto).
Cook on medium-low heat for 16 minutes only according to your
After 16 minutes, remove the
rice from the heat. If you are going to use it within the hour,
just slid it to the back of the stove, no heat, and let it sit.
If you are making well in advance, place in a shallow baking
pan and cover. Refrigerate until ready to serve. The rice can
be prepared to this point up to 3 days in advance.
TO SERVE: Remove chilled
rice from refrigerator and bring to room temperature. Place the
remaining 1 3/4 cups liquid in a wide pot or saute pan; heat
to a simmer over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium and
add the partially cooked risotto. Stir with a wooden spoon until
the liquid is absorbed and the rice is done cooking, approximately
4 to 5 minutes or until rice is tender but still firm (the rice
is done when it is tender, but firm to the bite). Turn off the
heat and immediately add the remaining butter and Parmesan cheese,
stirring vigorously to combine with the rice. Add salt and pepper
Note: To test the risotto for
proper consistency, spoon a little into a bowl and shake it lightly
from side to side. The risotto should spread out very gently
of its own accord. If the rice just stands still, it's too dry,
so add a little more stock. If a puddle of liquid forms around
the rice, you've added too much stock. Spoon some liquid off,
or just let the risotto sit for a few more seconds off the heat
to absorb the excess stock.
Transfer risotto to warmed serving
bowls and serve immediately with additional freshly grated Parmesan
cheese on the side.
Uses For Leftover Risotto:
- Make fried rice balls (arancine)
by molding risotto into golfball-size pieces. Poke a hole in
the ball and fill it with chopped meat or cheese. Seal the hole
with rice, roll the rice ball in beaten egg, toss it in flour,
- Make rice cakes (tortine de
riso) by shaping flat cakes about 3/4 inch thick. Warm some olive
oil in a pan and sauté the cakes until golden brown on
both sides. Drain any excess oil. Serve as a side dish or a light
- Thicken soups or broth with
with Chives and Truffle Oil
Copyright 2002 Linda Stradley.
Linda Stradley originated and
maintains an on-line cooking site called What's Cooking America
(www.whatscookingamerica.net). The web site is a continuation
of her first cookbook also called What's Cooking America, which
she co-authored with Andra Cook. She is a member of the Portland
Culinary Alliance (PCAJ) and the International Association of
Culinary Professionals (IACP). Linda has also appeared on local
and national television shows promoting her cookbook and demonstrating
her culinary cooking knowledge.