The risotto is a traditional dish of Italian cuisine that over the years has been sneaking into the recipe books of many cooking enthusiasts, for being a delicious dish that allows variations in the ingredients.
Although many do not believe it, this is a complex dish, which is not easy to achieve the smooth and creamy texture that characterizes it. So that you can achieve a perfect result, we tell you step by step how to make a creamy and perfect risotto..
What is risotto
This dish of Italian origin is characterized for being made with rice and having a creamy texture. Although there are many variations and recipesAlthough there are many variations and recipes, the best way to make a perfect risotto is to use cheese, which is another characteristic ingredient and the one that adds the most creaminess to the dish.
It is one of the most popular dishes in northern Italy, specifically in the area of Lombardy and Piedmont. The true origin of this recipe is unknown, but legend has it that its original and most widespread version, risotto alla milanesewas created in the 16th century by a young apprentice of a famous glass artisan. At his wedding feast he had the rice dishes colored with saffron to resemble gold, to surprise his fiancée.
Apart from the risotto alla milanesewhich contains saffron and is typical of Milan, there are other types depending on the main ingredients. The most popular are Parmesan, mushrooms, 4 cheeses, asparagus, vegetables or mushrooms.with asparagus, vegetables or mushrooms. But how to make a perfect risotto? The first thing to consider is the type of rice.
Any type of rice can be used, but the preferred grain type is small or medium, round and low amylose. These have a greater capacity to absorb the liquid and release the starch progressively, favoring the liquid and release the starch progressively, favoring the creamy texture required for risotto. The most recommended by Italians are the japonica variety, especially arborio and carnaroli.
There are many types of risotto according to the main ingredients.
How to make a risotto at its best
The basic ingredients in a risotto are rice, butter, olive oil, parmesan cheese, onion, chicken or vegetable stock, white wine, olive oil and salt. Optionally we can also add two cloves of garlic, black pepper and nutmeg, according to taste.
On the side, according to the variety of risotto that we want to prepareDepending on the variety of risotto we want to prepare, we will add more or other ingredients to the classic recipe, which we provide below. But to achieve a perfect risotto it does not matter so much what kind of recipe we follow, but that the rice is well cooked and the texture is the right one. For this we must follow a series of tips and pay close attention to the dish during preparation.
First of all, we should not wash the rice before cooking it, since this way it would lose part of the starch necessary to achieve its texture. A good risotto must be creamy, but the grains must be separated and al dente. For it will be basic to be stirring continuously and carefully, without pressing, so that the rice will release the starch little by little and will form the desired creamy texture.
To make a risotto at its bestAnother fact to take into account is that the broth that we will add to the rice must be hot at the moment of adding it, reason why it is recommended to have it to low fire in another pot while we prepare the rest.
Once finished, it must be consumed at the moment so that the grains do not absorb all the juice and we find them at their point. Before serving, we can decorate it with grated Parmesan cheese and parsley.
The best recipes for this dish
Here are the 3 most popular recipes to prepare it, so you can make a perfect risotto at home and try different versions.
1. The classic version
Although the most traditional version is alla milanesewith saffron, the simplest recipe of the dish is the one with just rice and parmesan cheese.. For this basic recipe we will need 400 gr of rice, 1 chopped onion, 1.5 l of chicken broth, 125 ml of white wine, 70g of grated Parmesan cheese, 80 gr of butter, olive oil, salt and pepper to taste.
Start by frying the chopped onion over low heat in a saucepan with olive oil. We poach it until it gets to brown. It will be then when we will be able to add the rice to fry it all together for about 4 or 5 minutes. When the rice starts to look transparent, then add the white wine.
Once the wine has been absorbed by the rice, increase the heat to medium and begin to add the broth start adding the broth in small quantities.. It is necessary to add it little by little throughout the 18 or 20 minutes that we will be cooking it, all without stopping stirring.
After this time, or when the rice is cooked to your liking, remove the pot from the heat and add the Parmesan cheese, butter and salt and pepper. Stir until a smooth and creamy texture is formed, and it is ready to serve!
It is important to add the broth little by little.
2. With mushrooms
To make a risotto with mushrooms we need 400 g of rice, 300 g of fresh mushrooms, 1 chopped onion, 1.5 l of chicken stock, 125 ml of white wine, 70 g of grated Parmesan cheese, 80 g of butter and olive oil. Two cloves of garlic and pepper can be added to taste.
To prepare the mushroom risotto, the best way is to use funghi porcini, the Italian variety of boletus. Although if we do not find the portobello variety is also recommended, and even use a mixture of several types of mushrooms, including mushrooms. To begin with, we clean them well, cut them into slices and set them aside.
In this case we also start by frying the chopped onion (and the chopped garlic, if used) in a saucepan with oil. Once the onion is transparent, add the mushrooms and sauté them. Then add the rice and sauté it all together for about 4 or 5 minutes, and finally add the white wine.
Then we continue with the same procedure we follow with any risotto. Once the wine has evaporated or has been absorbed, we start adding the broth little by little and over 18 or 20 minutes, depending on the time required by the type of rice used.. All without stopping stirring.
When the rice is cooked, remove the pot from the heat and add the Parmesan cheese and butter, stirring until a smooth and creamy texture is formed. Add salt and pepper to taste. And this is the recipe to make a boletus risotto at its best!
The risotto ai funghi or boletus risotto is one of the most tasty versions.
3. With 4 cheeses
To make a 4 cheese risotto we need 400 g of rice, 1 chopped onion, 1.5 l of chicken broth, 125 ml of white wine, 50 g of grated Parmesan cheese, 50 g of gorgonzola cheese, 50 g of taleggio cheese, 50 g of fontina cheese, 70 g of butter, olive oil, salt and pepper to taste.
As in the basic recipe, first fry the chopped onion over low heat in a saucepan with olive oil. When it is transparent and without browning, add the rice to sauté.When it is transparent and without browning, we add the rice to fry it all together for about 4 or 5 minutes. Then add the white wine.
Once the wine has been absorbed, we raise the fire and we add the broth little by little, throughout 18 or 20 minutes and while we are stirring.
When the rice is ready, remove the pot from the heat and add the 4 cheeses and the butter. Stir to obtain a smooth and creamy texture.. Add salt and pepper to taste, but bearing in mind that the type of cheeses used already provide a good amount of salt to the dish. That said, we can now enjoy a 4 cheese risotto!
And now you know how to make a delicious risotto! Remember that once you have mastered the most basic version of risotto preparation, you can follow these same recipes but adapting other ingredients to your taste. Which risotto do you prefer?