But once you master the basic risotto recipe, you can make several variants of it from the earthy mushroom to the zesty lemon. Risotto makes for a wonderful starter, a filling main dish or even a delectable dessert.
A Look at the Versatile Risotto
Risotto is a scrumptious Italian dish, which is prepared by cooking rice in broth, till it attains a velvety consistency. Risotto is a first course dish, which is normally served before the main course. An exception to this rule is risotto alla Milanese which is served with ossobuco alla Milanese.
Different types of broth, including vegetable, chicken, beef and seafood broth can be used to cook the risotto rice. Seafood, legumes, different type of cheese and even wine – red or white wine- can be used to enhance the flavor of risotto. If you are in the mood to make a truly exotic risotto you can even make Italian strawberry risotto.
Timing is extremely crucial to make the perfect creamy textured risotto dish. Once you master the art of making risotto, you can rustle up this dish at short notice.
Rice Varieties Used in the Preparation of Risotto
Rice is the main ingredient in risotto dishes. Round grained or semi round grained rice varieties are preferred for making the classic risotto dish. The short grained and round medium grained rice varieties are preferred over the long grained rice because they are able to absorb the flavors of the broth base better.
The principle rice varieties which are used in the preparation of risotto include Padano, Arborio, Roma, Baldo, Vialone Nano and Carnaroli. Most Italians use either the Vialone Nano or Arborio rice varieties to make their risotto.
Low Salt Chicken Broth (Canned) – 5 cups
Dry White Wine – ¾ cup
Butter – 6 tbsp
Finely Minced Garlic – 2tsp
Dried and Crushed Red Pepper – ¼ tsp
Uncooked Large Shrimp Cleaned Thoroughly – ½ pound
Finely Chopped Onion – ¾ cup
Vialone Nano or Arborio rice – 1.5 cups
Fresh Chopped Parsley – 2tbsp
1. Take medium sized non stick saucepan and pour the chicken broth and white wine into it. Simmer the wine and broth mixture over a medium flame for about five minutes. Once the wine and broth mixture begins to bubble lower the heat, but don’t switch of the gas.
2. Heat a medium sized skillet and melt two tablespoons of butter. Now add one teaspoon of minced garlic, the dried and crushed red pepper and sauté them lightly. Toss in the cleaned shrimp into the skillet.
3. Continuously sauté the shrimps for approximately two minutes or until the shrimps turn a light rose color.
4. Drain the shrimp and keep the stock aside.
5. Now take a heavy bottomed saucepan. Melt four tablespoons of butter in it. Toss in the onion and remaining garlic and sauté for approximately four minutes or till the onion becomes a light golden brown.
6. Next add the rice and sauté it for two minutes till the rice is nicely coated.
7. Add two cups of broth mixture and stir the rice gently till it absorbs all the liquid. Hereafter, add one cup of broth every 5 minutes or until the rice absorbs the liquid completely.
8. Now add the liquid in which the shrimps were cooked. Continue cooking the rice till it becomes thick and creamy.
9. Remove risotto from the heat source and serve it on a flat plate. Garnish risotto with finely chopped parsley leaves.