Risotto – Comfort food at its best

26 Mar

A very late post indeed! Apologies to my fellow Daring Cooks. It was made on time but my Christmas present from himself whisked my unfortunately sick self off to the Windy City for a holiday. Amazing time was had!! The flu lasted though and took me down when I get home so I have a lot of blogging to catch up on.

Risotto is one of my favourite comfort foods so I was thrilled to see it appear as the challenge. The rice just absorbs so much flavour making it ridiculously tasty!!

The 2010 March Daring Cooks challenge was hosted by Eleanor of MelbournefoodGeek and Jess of Jessthebaker. They chose to challenge Daring Cooks to make risotto. The various components of their challenge recipe are based on input from the Australian Masterchef cookbook and the cookbook Moorish by Greg Malouf.

The requirements for this challenge was that we had to make our own stock for the base…check!

I love making stock and it made this extremely tasty. I kept the additional flavours quite simple. I grilled some large open flat mushrooms with a pinch of sea salt and butter, sliced these and added them to the rice, along with black pepper and shredded parmesan. Yum!! Making me hungry as I type!

Chicken Stock

Ingredients:
1 large chicken 2-3 pounds about 1 kg
chicken bones 2-3 pounds 1 kg
2 onions, roughly diced
1 medium leek – white part only, roughly diced
2 sticks celery, roughly diced
2 cloves garlic, halved
1 cinnamon stick
1 tsp. white peppercorns ( Any type of whole peppercorn will do)
2 bay leaves (fresh or dried, it doesn’t matter.)
peel of 1/2 lemon
1/4 tsp. allspice

Directions:

  1. Wash the chicken and bones and places in a 5 Litre pot, cover completely with water and bring to a boil
  2. Skim away any scum as it comes to the surface
  3. Add the vegetables and bring back to a boil
  4. Add the rest remaining ingredients and simmer very gently, uncovered for 1.5 hours
  5. Carefully lift out the chicken, set aside. The chicken meat can be removed from the chicken, shredded off and used for other things like soup!
  6. Simmer the stock gently for another hour. At , at the end you should have around 2 Liters
  7. Carefully ladle the liquid into a fine sieve, the less the bones and vegetables are disturbed in this process the clearer the stock will be. 
The stock is now ready for use. Freeze what you don’t need for later use.

Risotto Base

Ingredients:
olive oil 2 fluid oz 60 ml
1 small onion, quartered
rice 14 oz 400g
Any type of risotto rice will do. I use Arborio but the recipe itself says Vialone Nano. Another to look for is Carnaroli. * I used Arborio
white wine 2 fl oz 60 ml
chicken or vegetable stock , simmering 2 pints 1 L

Directions:

  1. Heat oil in a pan and add onion. Fry for a few minutes to flavour the oil then discard. (We diced ours and left it in as we like onion).
  2. Add the rice and stir for a few minutes to coat each grain of rice with oil and toast slightly.
  3. Add the wine and let it bubble away until evaporated.
  4. Add enough stock to cover the rice by a finger’s width (about an inch or two). Don’t actually stick your finger in, it will be hot. Just eye it off.
  5. Cook on medium heat, stirring with a wooden spoon from time to time, until most of the stock has been absorbed.
  6. Repeat Step 5 making sure to leave aside approximately 100 ml. of stock for the final step. .
  7. Repeat, save 100ml for the final stage.
  8. Once you are at this point, the base is made. You now get to add your own variation.

Coated Rice

Adding the stock

Risotto with Mushrooms & Parmesan

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4 Responses to “Risotto – Comfort food at its best”

  1. Audax Artifex March 31, 2010 at 8:12 pm #

    Sorry to hear about your illness I hope you are well now and the trip sounds exciting. Your final risotto looks wonderful and sometimes simple is the best. Cheers from Audax in Sydney Australia.

  2. Audax Artifex March 31, 2010 at 8:15 pm #

    Sorry to hear about your illness I hope you are well now and the trip sounds exciting. Your final risotto looks wonderful and sometimes simple is the best. Cheers from Audax in Sydney Australia.

  3. Audax Artifex March 31, 2010 at 8:16 pm #

    Sorry to hear about your illness I hope you are well now and the trip sounds exciting. Your final risotto looks wonderful and sometimes simple is the best. Cheers from Audax in Sydney Australia.

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