Many of our fans are obsessed with risotto, but not everyone knows how to make this satisfying simple dish. Well, the easiest way to go about it is to try your hand at our Truffle Risotto recipe, which is one of our most popular recipes. But in this blog post, we're going a little deeper into why each step is important in the process of making a great risotto.
First, you have to choose the right rice for risotto, then add in a few high-quality ingredients that will make your end product absolutely delectable. By following our recipe below and the 5 tips provided, you will be well on your way to making perfect risotto in no time.
Choosing the right rice
When choosing rice for your risotto, there are two key factors to consider: the cooking time of the rice and how starchy it is. For creamy, perfectly runny risotto, two types of rice stand head and shoulders above all - arborio and carnaroli.
Both types are short-grained rices which are capable of producing a creamy risotto because they have the ability to absorb a lot of liquid and are very starchy which helps transform the liquid into a very creamy dish.
Use high-quality butter and olive oil
Butter and olive oil have their own distinctive flavors, but when blended together, they help to elevate the level of luxurious creaminess in risotto. Because they both add lots of flavor, it is important to use good-quality butter and olive oil in your risotto. If you want to use butter upfront in your risotto to sautée your onions or toast your rice, make sure to use low heat, as high heat will cause your butter to scorch. Our preference is to only use butter to finish your risotto and instead we suggest using olive oil to sautée your aromatics and toasting your rice.
Toast your rice!
A large part of the flavor developed in a classic risotto comes from lightly toasting your rice prior to adding stock (or your cooking liquid of choice). By toasting the rice it develops a noticeably nutty flavor that adds an additional layer of complexity to your risotto. The longer and deeper you toast your rice, the more intense the flavor is developed, however, you should aim to strike a balance between the toasted flavor of your rice and the additional ingredients you use to flavor your risotto.
When cooking rice, some people feel the need to boil their rice to have it cook quicker, but risotto is a labor of love. It takes time for the rice to gently cook without burning. Cooked over high heat, your source of liquid will evaporate too quickly before the rice has a chance to cook to a perfect ‘al dente’ consistency. Instead, it’s best to keep your heat low, just barely simmering your rice which will allow it to cook gently and evenly.
Add butter and a blend of cheeses for extra creaminess
The final touch to any risotto is the addition of butter and cheese. Here is where you definitely should not skimp on quality. Using good-quality butter in combination with good-quality cheese will create a final dish that will amaze. Our Sabatino Tartufi White Truffle Oil would be an excellent addition at this point.
For an additional touch of complexity, you can use a blend of cheeses to create a deeper, richer risotto. We like to use a blend of Parmigiano-Reggiano and Pecorino, because they are widely available and unequivocally delicious, but you can feel free to go crazy and try a few of your favorite cheeses in the blend.
We hope these tips help you create your best risotto. And for a delicious risotto in a hurry, our Sabatino Pronto Truffle Risotto is not to be missed.