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How to Make an Authentic Italian Risotto

Updated on August 03, 2009
kittenpuff1
kittenpuff1

An authentic Italian risotto starts from the right choice of rice. The best rice that will yield a great risotto, is a short grained rice produced in the Po river Valley. The name of such rice is called Arborio and can be found in some Italian groceries abroad or in some foreign cuisine specialty stores. The rice presents as a short grained rice with an oval shape and a pearly appearance. This special type of rice really makes a difference if one wants to savour an authentic Italian risotto because it is a very starchy rice that donates special creaminess to the risotto as it cooks.

In order to cook an authentic Italian risotto, the following utensils are recommended:

  •  A heavy bottom saucepan in order to grant an even cooking surface
  • A wooden spoon in order to prevent the Arborio's rice delicate grains from breaking
  • A ladle to gradually add broth to the risotto, one ladle at a time as required.

The great thing about risotto is that there are a lot of ways to prepare it. While the Italian method for cooking risotto remains the same, various diverse ingredients may be added so to make a variety of risottos. Some popular risottos in Italy are: wild mushroom risotto, asparagus risotto and Milan saffron risotto. Therefore, the ingredients required to prepare a risotto will vary depending what type of risotto is prepared. The following is the standard way to prepare a simple risotto.

Ingredients needed:

  • Arborio Rice
  • Chicken Stock
  • Onion
  • Butter
  • Parmesan Cheese
  • Parsley

Step 1

Prepare some stock, calculating that for each cup of uncooked Arborio rice you will need approximately 3-4 cups of broth. Keep the stock warm. In the heavy sauce pan, melt the butter and some chopped onion. Cook until the onion is transparent. Add the rice allowing it to sizzle nicely for a few minutes. This helps the rice release some pleasant nutty flavors.

Step 2

At this point the warm chicken stock can be added one ladle at a time as it is absorbed. The rice will cook slowly releasing its starch and becoming creamy. The rice should not be overcooked: this is the main characteristic of an authentic risotto, it must be slightly undercooked allowing a certain firmness to the bite. This is what Italians define as ''al dente''.

Step 3

The risotto at this point is ready. A touch of butter and a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese may add to the creaminess of the risotto. The dish can be garnished with some chopped parsley that will finish the dish. Risotto must be served warm, right away so to prevent it from becoming sticky or over cooked.

As seen, it does not take much to prepare a good risotto. If you do not want it plain, simply add some mushrooms or asparagus to the butter and onion and saute' a bit longer before adding the rice. Now, that you have learned the art of risotto, you can invite some friends over and enjoy the dish with gusto. Bon Appetito!


RiceSelect Arborio Rice, 32-Ounce Jars (Pack of 4)
RiceSelect Arborio Rice, 32-Ounce Jars (Pack of 4)

Creamy, al dente grains. Flavored by nature. No additives. Microwavable. Grown in the USA.

 
All-Clad T109 Stainless Steel Large Soup Ladle Kitchen Tool, 14.5-Inch, Silver
All-Clad T109 Stainless Steel Large Soup Ladle Kitchen Tool, 14.5-Inch, Silver

Renowned worldwide for its cookware collections, All-Clad now makes kitchen accessories, and that's welcome news to serious and professional cooks.

 
Risotto: More than 100 Recipes for the Classic Rice Dish of Northern Italy
Risotto: More than 100 Recipes for the Classic Rice Dish of Northern Italy

This volume comprises more than 100 creative variations on basic risotto, a rice dish from northern Italy. In addition to serving risotto as a first course in the Italian style, the authors suggest it as a side dish or as an entree when accompanied by bread and a salad or vegetable. These recipes derive from classic and new Italian cooking, as well as the authors' imaginations.

 
Mario Batali 13-Inch Risotto Paddle, Solid Beechwood
Mario Batali 13-Inch Risotto Paddle, Solid Beechwood

Mario Batali Solid beachwood 13" risotto paddle with mineral oilfinish. Oversized wooden utensils to make it easier to use when serving large meals family style. Contoured groove on handle to make stirring and serving easier.

 
Williams-Sonoma Collection: Risotto
Williams-Sonoma Collection: Risotto

A compendium of every imaginable variation of a northern Italian staple, this volume, part of Williams-Sonoma's user-friendly cookbook series, is divided into six sections dedicated to different interpretations of risotto.

 
Lundberg Creamy Parmesan Risotto, 5.5-Ounce Units  (Pack of 12)
Lundberg Creamy Parmesan Risotto, 5.5-Ounce Units (Pack of 12)

A creamy rice entree in the Italian tradition. Low fat. Lundberg Family Farms is proud to present Creamy Parmesan Risotto. Hailed the pasta of Northern Italy, risotto is a deliciously creamy rice dish resulting from the unique cooking properties of Arborio rice.

 

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    • Hello DoYouLoveMe profile image

      Hello DoYouLoveMe 7 years ago

      Woooo, very delicious:) Thanks you!

    • Hello DoYouLoveMe profile image

      Hello DoYouLoveMe 7 years ago

      Woooo, very delicious:) Thanks you!

    • jim10 profile image

      jim10 7 years ago from ma

      Thanks, this sounds great. I'm not sure I will find that specific rice though.

    • profile image

      Italian Risotto Rice 6 years ago

      The Italian Risotta rice - Arborio Rice can always be found at an Italian specialty store in most cities but I also see "alexadry" put up a link above for the rice being sold at Amazon. That is something a lot of people have to get use to, buying food items from Amazon. Good luck in finding it!

    • profile image

      Risotto Rice Dish 6 years ago

      Italian risotto is an incredible dish that works well for may main dishes and the taste is not matched. Thanks for the great hub on Italian risotto rice!

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