Calories per portion 450
Ingredients (Serves 4)
2 tablespoon of Aromatic Oil made with 1 small onion
2 cups of Carnaroli rice (Vialone Nano would be the best choice if available)
½ glass of white wine
¼ gallon of Vegetable Broth
1 lemon skin (medium to big size untreated lemon)
Fresh thyme or basil (optional)
½ to 1 cup of grated Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon cold Butter (kept in the fridge till last minute)
This recipe is pretty easy to make (it is actually a 2 stars difficulty, but I had to rate it 3 since it is a risotto and so it requires some cooking skills). In the summertime it is a fresh 1st course, but if we spread it flat and let it cool off, then we can make rice quenelles with it, add a slice of fresh salmon on top of each one and serve it as an appetizer. For better understanding of risotto technique, let’s refer to the Rice post.
Take a large pot and make 2 tablespoon of Aromatic Oil with onion chunks, easy to pick and discard as described in the module instructions. If available, we can use this type of onion;
… otherwise, any other kind of green onion or small red onion will do as well. When the oil is nicely flavored, bring up the temperature, add the rice and toast it stirring till it will smell like toasted. Pour the wine and let it evaporate. Add enough vegetable broth to barely cover the rice, stir it and wait till the rice will surface again before adding another ladle. Continue this procedure adding one ladle at a time and stir the risotto once in a while (most recipes suggest to keep stirring it while it is cooking, but I prefer this way; it makes it less starchy and keeps it crisper). It takes from 15 to 16 minutes for risotto to be cooked (consider that, after you turn the heat off, the compound still continues cooking because of the heat inside the pot). Taste the risotto and eventually adjust it with salt then let the last ladle of broth be absorbed and turn off the heat. Add Parmesan cheese and mix it till it will melt nicely inside the pot. Use a zester or a grater to sprinkle the grated skin of one lemon (Microplan does a great job because it catches only the very fine yellow peel and not the white underneath). Grab a piece of butter from the refrigerator and quickly whisk it in the risotto. Never bring a bowl of rice on the table, just serve the risotto in single portion and it will be enough to beat with the palm of your hand on the bottom of the plate to have it spread nicely. If you have some fresh herbs like thyme (best) or basil, sprinkle it on the final dish and add half a slice of lemon on the side as décor (decoration always must recall what’s inside your preparation, it is appealing and a form of courtesy to your guests since it shows what they are about to taste).