Monday, June 21, 2010

Easy Risotto

This one's from the wonderful chefs in the Horvath household.  I love it.  I keep trying new risotto recipes (butternut squash and prosciutto risotto! risotto with spring vegetables!) and always come back to this one.  I do admit it's ruined me for new risottos because of its simplicity.  There's none of that standing over a steaming pot stirring for 20-40 minutes (Ina Garten romanticizes this labor by pairing it with a glass of wine, but after trying this with a toddler, it's just not worth it to me).  It's simple and uses only ingredients you probably already have on hand.  I have made it with a varying combination of cheese: Peccorino Romano, Peccorino Romano and Parmesan, Parmesan, Romano, Romano and Parmesan, etc.  Any of those delicious hard Italian cheeses seem to work, adjusting the salt amount accordingly (if any-- I find Peccorino provides enough salt).

Serves 4

3 c water
1 c arborio rice
4 tbsp butter (1/2 stick)
1 chicken bouillon cube
1/2-2/3 c grated Romano
salt to taste

1. Bring water to boil in medium saucepan and add butter, bouillon and rice.  Cover and turn heat to low and simmer 20 minutes.

2. Uncover and turn heat to med, stirring until rice is goopy but not wet, about 5 minutes.  You must be stirring constantly.

3. Add Romano and salt to taste and stir until combined.  Serve warm and enjoy!


  1. Ooh, I would love to try this. Also, I assume you have the America's Test Kitchen Cookbook - have you ever tried the risotto cakes? SO GOOD! And a fantastic thing to do with leftover risotto, since most recipes always make more than I need. In a nutshell you take a good sized scoop of leftover risotto and make a patty (3/4 cup? maybe, I eyeball it anyway so whatever), make a little indentation and fill it with cheese (I've tried it with lots of types; usually whatever's in the fridge but a type that will melt and be all gooey is ideal). Then you cover up the cheese with a little risotto so that you have a little risotto burger. Dip in beaten egg doctored with a dash of cayenne or paprika, dip in breadcrumbs so that it's covered, fry in a little vegetable oil - I think maybe 3 minutes per side? - until golden. We like to put it on a bed of salad greens and squeeze lemon juice over.

  2. I am so hungry now I just might go make risotto, so that I can try your recipe and so I can make risotto cakes tomorrow night. Thanks!

  3. I do not have that cookbook, but am so happy to have that recipe now. I do have a recipe for risotto cakes, but have never made them because I love the risotto so much I usually just reheat it. But adding more cheese and frying risotto is tempting...

  4. Oh my goodness, get that cookbook! It's the best.

  5. My next move is Gourmet, actually. But it's good to have a wish list.

  6. Happy to help with the Gourmet cookbook. You all have a great time in the kitchen.

  7. I'm going to make this tonight! I have had no luck with risotto in the past, but if y'all say it's easy, then I will take your word for it!