Risotto is a traditional way of cooking rice that is unique to the Italy’s culinary tradition. It has becoming famous throughout the world for its rich flavours, versatility, and velvety texture. The final consistency depends on Italian regional preferences and ingredients, but its preparation always calls for the same series of artful steps.
First, you must prepare the base sauté, or soffritto in Italian, toast the rice for a few minutes, then slowly blend cups of water, broth or wine, and other ingredients as the risotto gradually cooks. Finally, stir in extra-virgin olive oil, butter and cheese for what is known as the mantecatura, which creates the silky elegance only true risotto can boast. Only certain kinds of Italian rice are suitable for risotto, mainly Carnaroli, Arborio, Vialone Nano, Roma and Baldo. These are larger grains of rice with higher starch content, and more resilience in the casserole pan, making them ideal for absorbing and blending flavours.
Top risotto dishes include Milan’s hallmark risotto with saffron, risotto with a creamy tomato sauce and scampi, as well as risottos with cheeses such as Parmigiano Reggiano or Salva Cremasco. Risotto is such a versatile food that the only limits are your technique and your imagination!