Servings: six as a first course.
While it would be unfair to say that this is the risotto after which all others are derived—the Venetians provide plenty of competition—its lovely simplicity is hard to match. If you’re uneasy about risotto, this is a good recipe to start with because it’s simple and requires so few ingredients.
Make Ahead Tips
If you try to make risotto ahead completely and then reheat it, it will be overcooked and mushy. Instead, you can cook it until it’s about halfway done—the rice should still be rather firm inside—and then spread it out on a baking sheet to stop cooking and cool. Cover the rice and set it aside at room temperature for up to two hours. When you’re ready to serve the risotto, return it to the pot and resume adding hot liquid until it’s perfectly al dente, a few minutes later.
If you have any leftover risotto, it’s delicious made into crunchy Risotto Cakes.
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My family loved the risotto, but I detoured quite a bit from the recipe; I only used about half the amount of rice, based on a tried and true recipe I found years ago. I use a shallot instead of an onion. Better overall flavor. I also use salted butter as it prevents me from over-salting it on my own. I also put the saffron in with the stock as it warmed on the stove. This gave the stock a beautiful color and helped evenly distribute the flavor of the saffron.
(As an aside, never use canned stock for risotto. You can taste the metal. There are far better stocks or broths that come boxed. Also, warm your stock so you don't continually cool the rice while cooking.)
Overall, great flavor and it is the new standard in our home. I would love to try this with a hard goat cheese instead of the Parmesan sometime. I served this was rosemary chicken, which blended nicely with the rice.
Excellent! I will add this to my repetoire.
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