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Favorite Risotto?


liuzhou
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I just grabbed me a pack of Arborio for the first time in a quarter of a century. It is imported from Italy and, as such, wasn't cheap but not ridiculous. So, now I'm thinking what to do with it. Make risotto, obviously but what kind?

 

Arborio.thumb.jpg.d81a2ec5667b10b30df2cb102c00f1fe.jpg

 

In the distant past, I mainly did mushroom risottos and certainly plan one of them here (my access to an innumerable variety of wild and cultivated mushrooms, fresh and dried, is huge!), but I'd like to also do something else. Anything except c@rn risotto which I've noticed some people doing on this very platform!

 

I look forward to some inspiring ideas!

...your dancing child with his Chinese suit.

 

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I enjoyed the butternut squash risotto that I made last year, perhaps there is an alternate type of pumpkin available to you in China?

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"Only dull people are brilliant at breakfast" - Oscar Wilde

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I've had minor success with mixed seafood. Though if I have a fresh fish stock via a freshly caught cod, or similar, using the carcas---we prefer a Fishermans stew or chowder. Maybe a bouillabaisse. 

Leek, fennel, celery, smoked salmon with a prosciutto bacon/fennel frond garnish. That pleases the household. Similar greens available like garlic chives, bok choy, etc with fish... Lobster, shrimp, scallops, crab... we prefer other recipes. 

That said, my first cookbooks were MarcellaHazan's 2 little paperbacks next to my futon on the floor in my first NYC apartment. Besides a wok and stir fry, maybe chili and pasta, my first real serious recipe was Marcella's porcini risotto. I now use porcini and a mixed wild blend---maybe leeks, but really hard to go off that script. I make half the box of arborio and make arancini the next day. The smoked salmon makes good arancini but nothing like mushrooms. 

Need to check my pantry for arborio rice. Such a good Fall and holiday meal. 

 

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Risotto is one thing I can say that I know quite well.  When I was 12 my uncle and I even entered a local risotto competition and beat out one of the city's top chefs!  I seem to recall it was artichoke risotto.

 

Hilarity aside.

 

Wild mushroom risotto is classic, preferably porcini's.  The key, IMO - is your liquid.  Taking the time to make an intense mushroom stock will pay off big time.  Also I will saute some mushrooms, add butter, wine, mushroom stock - and reduce.  Add that towards the end of cooking for a flavour boost.

 

If you want to branch out, lately a big hit at my place is 'deconstructed pizza' risotto - basically take garden tomatoes, make a sauce - strain - there's your liquid.  Add basil and Parm/Mozz at the end of cooking.  Enjoy.

 

So many more iterations.  The key though, is your liquid!

 

 

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You could go the Venetian route and do a beef cheek risotto - when my wife was on a wine press trip to the Veneto region, they served it to her and the rest of the group almost every day!  I think duck would do well also, both staying within a traditional style.

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Perhaps it's the name that just throws you off.  Call it Roasted Heirloom Tomato risotto finished with fresh grated cheese if it helps sell it to yourself  😛

 

As mentioned earlier, artichoke risotto works really well, especially if you make a puree and add it at the end.  Same goes for asparagus. 

 

And if you want to splurge, you can never go wrong with white truffles and young pecorino.

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Oh boy, where do I begin? (We love risotto around here.) 

 

I agree wholeheartedly that the broth you use is everything. If it is good quality, as are the butter and cheese, you don't even need to add anything! :)

 

Another citrusy one is leek risotto with lemon zest and scented with rosemary. 

Another delicious one is radicchio. Can also be finished with some sort of white cheese. 

Risotto with shrimp (Can be with tomato or with zucchini or with saffron.)

Risotto with calamari

Risotto with mixed seafood (clams, mussels, shrimp calamari)

Risotto with saffron is delicious with pieces of sausage. Instead of Milanese style it's called Monzese (a city outside Milan).

Risotto with pear and pecorino (or gorgonzola or taleggio) is popular here (but I don't like it).

Spring Risotto with new spring veg

Truffle risotto

Asparagus risotto

 

Edited by ambra (log)
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i love a risotto with squid and tomato. The sofrito is made by finely chopping squid bodies and tentacles.  Onion, garlic, parsley and the chopped squid, a splash of white wine, bubbled away and then a can of san marzano tomatoes. cook for 45 minutes until the squid is very tender. Then add the rice and proceed with broth as needed.

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Mushroom is indeed the crowd favorite, and for a reason.

Risotto alla milanese (with saffron and a good stock) is a classic.

I've made a lemon and shrimp risotto that I thought was quite good.

I also like risotto with peas, you can make it in the style of risi e bisi with prosciutto or other dry ham.

 

Also, when you run out of risotto or get tired of it, barley make a nice alternative. It has a somewhat different texture, but works well in most if not all risotto recipes. I use it sometimes for variety.

Edited by shain (log)
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~ Shai N.

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2 hours ago, shain said:

Mushroom is indeed the crowd favorite, and for a reason.

Risotto alla milanese (with saffron and a good stock) is a classic.

I've made a lemon and shrimp risotto that I thought was quite good.

I also like risotto with peas, you can make it in the style of risi e bisi with prosciutto or other dry ham.

 

Also, when you run out of risotto or get tired of it, barley make a nice alternative. It has a somewhat different texture, but works well in most if not all risotto recipes. I use it sometimes for variety.

I agree with barley as a sub. "Barlotto" is a favorite.

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2 hours ago, shain said:

 

Also, when you run out of risotto or get tired of it, barley make a nice alternative. It has a somewhat different texture, but works well in most if not all risotto recipes. I use it sometimes for variety.

 

Unfortunately, barley is even more rare than risotto rice here. In fact, I've never managed to find it.

 

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...your dancing child with his Chinese suit.

 

The Kitchen Scale Manifesto

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7 hours ago, gfweb said:

I agree with barley as a sub. "Barlotto" is a favorite.

 

Orzotto is the Italian term :) Barely = orzo.

Which is unintuitive to me, since orzo pasta seems more like rice, and since orrez is Hebrew for rice as well.

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~ Shai N.

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2 hours ago, shain said:

 

Orzotto is the Italian term :) Barely = orzo.

Which is unintuitive to me, since orzo pasta seems more like rice, and since orrez is Hebrew for rice as well.

 

That is why I prefer to use the alternative name risoni for the pasta, but then people ask me what that is and I have to say orzo! Risoni is more used in Italy.

 

I often make orzotto.

Edited by liuzhou (log)
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...your dancing child with his Chinese suit.

 

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What hasn't been discussed here is the variety of rice the OP was able to purchase.

 

I haven't used arborio for a long time, finding carnaroli to be better suited to my taste, and maybe even a little more forgiving in the cooking.

 

Any seafood risotto I'm making, especially if it's in the Venetian (all'onda) styIe, I reach for the vialone nano. Or for risi e bisi mentioned above, it's vialone nano, since that variety of rice is better suited to a looser, creamier style.

 

For the rice in the OP, I'd suggest asparagus, mushroom, artichoke, or other vegetable type risotto.   I did make a risotto once with red wine and beef that was pretty interesting; a Marcella recipe.

 

And in Marcella's Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking, (eG-friendly Amazon.com link) you might find in addition to the red wine and beef mentioned:

 

Risotto with Parmesan

Risotto with Saffron

Risotto with Porcini

Risotto with Asparagus 

Risotto with Celery

Risotto with Zucchini

Risotto with Spring Veg, Tomato and Basil

Risotto with Clams

Risotto with Vegetables and Red Wine

Risotto with Sausages

Risotto Bolognese

 

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Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"

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Understood.

 

Most of, if not all of Marcella's vegetable recipes are variations on a theme, obviously. And she likes to use what she calls meat broth, as opposed to chicken stock, for many of her risotti.  If that is not in supply, Im pretty sure I read she'll use plain water - seafood stock or water for those which call for seafood.

 

Herewith, her classic risotto with Parmesan...

 

https://www.pbs.org/food/fresh-tastes/marcella-hazan-parmesan-risotto/

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Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"

Tasty Travails - My Blog

My eGullet FoodBog - A Tale of Two Boroughs

Was it you baby...or just a Brilliant Disguise?

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On 9/28/2021 at 3:19 AM, liuzhou said:

I just grabbed me a pack of Arborio for the first time in a quarter of a century. It is imported from Italy and, as such, wasn't cheap but not ridiculous. So, now I'm thinking what to do with it. Make risotto, obviously but what kind?

 

Arborio.thumb.jpg.d81a2ec5667b10b30df2cb102c00f1fe.jpg

 

In the distant past, I mainly did mushroom risottos and certainly plan one of them here (my access to an innumerable variety of wild and cultivated mushrooms, fresh and dried, is huge!), but I'd like to also do something else. Anything except c@rn risotto which I've noticed some people doing on this very platform!

 

I look forward to some inspiring ideas!

Question.   I notice a  distinctive aroma from the bins of dried mushrooms in the shops of my Asian neighborhood, much different from the scent of European varieties.    What varieties do you use in your risottos?   

eGullet member #80.

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14 minutes ago, Margaret Pilgrim said:

Question.   I notice a  distinctive aroma from the bins of dried mushrooms in the shops of my Asian neighborhood, much different from the scent of European varieties.    What varieties do you use in your risottos?   

 

See here.

...your dancing child with his Chinese suit.

 

The Kitchen Scale Manifesto

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