I debated whether to put this in my regular recipe section of here, but here’s the deal, while this is not UNhealthy, risotto is a comfort food. It is rich, creamy, yummy and deceptively easy, so it needs to live here in the Basic-Bitch Kitchen!
I know y’all are like, “Risotto? That is way to fancy for me!!!” But, I promise it’s not! It’s cheap, easy, faster than you think, and oh so damn tasty.
This whole thing should take you less than an hour. It’s only 30 minutes of cooking, so it all depends on how slow you chop that onion!
As always in this section, I’ll give y’all the BASIC recipe and then I’ll tell you how to jazz it up however your little heart desires.
There are a few key ingredients in risotto to make it good and not just be like rice and water, but this is as stripped down as I think you can go and still have yummy flavor.
1 cup arborio rice (you REALLY cannot cheat here. If you don’t have it, wait till you do.)
3 cups stock (I always make this vegetarian and I love mushroom stock, but any stock will do.)
6 minced garlic cloves (you can do more or less for taste)
1/2 cup minced onion (some recipes say ‘shallot’. I have no fucking clue the difference. Use onion, use shallot, use purple onion…use what you have.)
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons butter (omit or substitute if you are vegan)
Grated Parmesan or other hard Italian cheese
Salt & pepper, obviously
HOW TO MAKE IT
The key to damn good risotto is patience. That. Is. It. Pour a glass of wine, turn on some music, and hunker down in your spot next to the stove because you really can’t leave for the next 30 minutes or so. You ready?
- Mince the garlic and onion
2. Heat the butter and oil and add the onion garlic and salt. You should be on a medium-high flame.
3. Saute until they turn clear and then start to turn golden, but do your best not to burn the hell out of them here!
4. And now the wine…if you haven’t drunk it all. Whether you use white, red or even pink depends on what kind you are making. Whatever you fucking do, do NOT use sweet wine. You can use a basic-bitch box. They say you should only cook with wine you would drink. Do you drink box wine? ‘Nuff said. For this basic recipe, I could have gone either way, but I had red open. In the variations, I’ll give you suggestions. If you are anti-wine or some shit, don’t use it, but fun fact: the alcohol cooks off and it adds great flavor (even if it’s cheap-ass wine.) Do NOT use wine that has gone bad because it has been open on your counter for two weeks. That will be GROSS! Who does that anyway!?!?!
Let that cook down and then add the rice.
Stir that for about a minute.
This next is the key to good risotto, so pay attention!
Y’all gonna add the liquid about 1/2 cup at a time. Y’all don’t need to measure, just put a little in at a time and STIR. I know, you don’t stir rice normally, but this kind, you stir to get that creamy yumminess. Trust. Have faith in this boss bitch!
I keep a small sauce pan on the stove and keep that on low so that the liquid is not cold when you add it
And you just keep doing that. Add liquid. Stir. Wait. Repeat. (Clearly, this is why you need to have wine and music and maybe some company.) You don’t need to stir every second, but at regular intervals.
I had the end of a Parmesan cheese in my fridge. A top tip is to throw that it in. This is totes NOT required, but if you don’t throw that shit out, you can use it at moments like this.
After you have done two cups of liquid, taste it. It should still be crunchy in the middle, if it is tasting more done, you don’t need to keep adding liquid. Does it have enough salt? Now is a good time to add pepper and any herbs you want to. With this recipe, Thyme and Rosemary would be good.
You will probably need another 1/2 cup to 1 cup of liquid, so keep adding and stirring maybe 1/4 cup at a time now.
Then taste again. It should have a bite…you don’t want this all mushy…but not be like, crunchy. Add 1T of butter.
This should have been about 30 minutes.
Finish cooking off any remaining liquid and turn off the heat. Add the cheese.
Stir that in and you done, bitch!
OPTIONAL SEASONAL VARIATIONS
- Use a basic vegetable or chicken stock.
- Use a Sauvignon Blanc or other light white wine.
- At the very end with the butter, add frozen or fresh peas…maybe 1/2-1 cup.
- Season with oregano.
- Use a basic vegetable stock
- Use any light white wine with a citrus taste, maybe Pinot Grigio (I used a French Cotes du Rhone because I’m fancy!)
- At the end with the last 1/2 of liquid, add bite-sized pieces of raw asparagus, lemon zest 1 T lemon juice and fresh or dried basil. Cook till asparagus is done enough.
- Use chicken or mushroom stock
- Use a fuller white wine like chardonnay or even a rose or a light red, like Pinot Noir
- Pre-roast cubes of butternut squash and pre-caramelize onions and add those in with the butter and cheese.
- Add fresh or dried sage
- Use chicken, beef or mushroom stock
- Use a full-bodied red wine
- Add sliced mushrooms (any variety) in with the garlic and onions and saute
- Add a bay leaf.
- Season with rosemary, thyme and sage.
As with my other recipes, the possibilities are endless. This isn’t brain surgery, try something and see how it goes!!
Who says you basic, bitch!?!?! You killin’ it!
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