how "I" make risotto....I'm a self-proclaimed risotto king as of late. probably made it 20 times the past couple months.
heat up to about a simmer, a bunch of stock...more than you think you will use. 6-8 cups or so for each cup of risotto.
I put a little fat/oil/butter/ in a pan.....and throw in a minced shallot or 2 depending on how big.
sautee for 2 minutes or so, don't burn them... then throw in your cup of rice (arborio, or if you can get it, Carnaroli)
give it a few stirs....a few more....and a few more...for just 2 minutes or so, or rather how I know when to go to the next step, is the rice starts to smell a little "nutty"
then, I throw in a glass of white wine, or....more often, what I use is vermouth. (dry)
stir and reduce it down about 3/4.....then turn the heat to mid-low depending on your stove....and ladle in a few ladles of broth.....let it sit a few minutes...stir here and there....when it seems like it needs more liquid.....add a few more ladles...keep doing that until it's done! some say add the stock in 3rds....i say, just ladle a few, and ladle a few.....its done when its to your taste texture wise....i like a little al dente.....then i'll throw in a handful or 2 of grated parm reggiano, and a few tbs of butter and stir.....and serve. I don't use cream in mine, you could, if you want....we'll probably brow beat you because of course its supposed to be creamy enough without it....but....go brow beat Thomas Keller, he uses cream in his.
variations can be anything. use the right stock for the right protien if you are serving one. seafood, for seafood, beef (or veal if you can) for beef, chicken for chicken, etc....
you can make a wild mushroom risotto,
this was actually a truffle risotto (just threw a few drops of white truffle oil right at the end) with a mushroom ragout on top.
saffron risotto, bloom the saffron in the stock...
throw a butter/vanilla poached lobster tail on top.
I've made risotto only once before, and that was before I started to take cooking a little more serious. Results were mediocre.
Yesterday I made a saffron lobster risotto. I didn't have enough shells to make a lobster stock, so I made some chicken stock instead. I poached the tail (and shell pieces) in the butter that I used to start the risotto.
Oh was this risotto absolutely delicious! I loved the control that I had over it too. Just the right consistency and the flavor was almost spot on (I need more shells) but really really good.
great post RPM... thats just about to the T of how i make mine as well.. i do however use cream... but only when im heating it back up and just reconstituting a lil bit of liquid...
i was the risotto man at my last job... we had at LEAST 2 different kinds of risotto each week, with each new week were at least 2 brand new types of risotto id have to come up with... i didnt really have to make completely new ones but i wanted to challenge myself and try to not repeat a flavor of risotto.... basically i got to the point where i looked in a risotto book for 'inspiration' and realized i had done every frickin one in the book and some lol...
me and my old lead line cook messed around one day and fanagled a White Russian Risotto... it was weird. it was delicious cuz i love white russians and we got it to taste exactly like one... but it was also gross at the same time cuz ur body doesnt naturally want to chew a white russian.. lol
Have I ever sang the praises of Jamie Oliver's risotto recipes? My favorite being a mushroom risotto or the famous blue cheese risotto - make a basic risotto recipe then add 1/2 cup crumbled gorgonzola, and 1 diced apple or pear at the end. I can't seem to move on from these 2 and expand to other risotto recipes. I dream about them!