Thursday, April 26, 2007

Risotto Zucchini e Porcini (Courgette & Mushroom Risotto)

Serves 2

- 250gm Arborio rice
- 200gm zucchini diced
- 100gm mushrooms sliced into thick chunks
- 100gm pancetta diced
- 1 small onion diced
- 200ml dry white wine warmed
- 600ml hot vegetable stock
- 2 tablespoons parmeggiano freshly grated
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 2 teaspoons oil
- some parsley finely chopped
- salt and pepper

Heat half of the butter and oil in a large heavy-based saucepan till the butter starts to foam*. Add the onion and saute until it softens. Remove from the pan and put aside**. Heat the remaining butter and oil in the pan. Add the rice and heat through over moderate flame, stirring constantly, until shiny. Return the onion to the pan. Stir in the zucchini. Follow with the bacon and mushrooms, stirring constantly to blend in the tastes and avoid any sticking. Increase the heat and start pouring in the wine slowly. Then add the stock slowly allowing the liquid to be absorbed into the rice before adding more***. The risotto is ready once the the texture is creamy but each grain is still firm to the bite in the centre. Add the cheese and salt and pepper to taste. Leave to rest with the lid on for a few minutes then stir once and serve immediately. Garnish with parsley.

* Butter gives a better taste but burns more easily. Oil is so added to stop the butter from burning so quickly.
** The onion should be removed from the heat else it burns when frying the rice.
*** The stock added should be hot to keep the temperature of the risotto constant.

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