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Squisito Risotto

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SINCE INTERNATIONAL tourism is not yet allowed at this moment, there are things that we could do to experience the world. One of them is to journey through food.

Aside from being well known as the fashion capital of the world, Milan, Italy produces the best risotto in the planet, says a dear friend, Emilio Mina, a Milanese (Italians from Milan), who used to be in the fashion business and the owner of Caruso Ristorante the famous high-end Italian restaurant frequented bysocialites, located in Makati.

Risotto is an Italian rice dish, cooked in a special broth, prepared in a specific way, to make the rice al dente and the texture creamy. My forever favorite among all the risotto dishes, which is subtle yet celestial and nutritious, is Risotto ai Fungi or Mushroom Risotto.

Ingredients: 20 g dried porcini mushrooms (alternative-fresh portobello), 1 liter vegetable stock, 2 tablespoons olive oil, 20 g butter, 1 small onion (finely chopped), 2 cloves garlic (crushed), 385 g risotto rice or black sticky rice, 250 g flat mushrooms, pinch of nutmeg, ½ cup grated parmesan cheese, 3 tablespoons parsley (finely chopped), salt and pepper to taste.

Preparation: Soak the porcini mushrooms for 30 minutes in boiling water. Drain and finely chop the porcini, strain and reserve the liquid. Pour the stock into the saucepan and bring to boil. Reduce the heat, cover with a lid and simmer.

Using another pan, heat the olive oil and butter in a saucepan. Add the onion and garlic, cook until soft (do not burn). Stir in the rice until it is well coated. Throw in the fresh mushrooms and nutmeg. Season and cook, stirring every 1-2 minutes. Add the chopped porcini and their liquid. Increase the heat until all the liquid is absorbed.

Add ½ cup of the stock and stir constantly over medium heat. Continue adding the stock slowly until all liquid is absorbed, the rice is tender and creamy(add more stock if needed).

Turn off the heat, spoon out the dish on to the plates, sprinkle freshly grated parmesan cheese generously and hefty of parsleya great tonic herb for the kidneys. Makes 4 servings.

Each platter of this squisito (exquisite) risotto, empowers your body with mighty antioxidants and anti-inflammatory substances acquired from the porciniand parsley. While the grains (riso) build up your energy system, the Parmigiano- Reggiano (parmesan)guarantees your bones strength. Whereas the allium sativum (garlic), allium cepa (onion) and olive extract pirouette in unison to secure your heart’s health.

If you are adventurous and want to add moreingredients, you may do so. After all, nothing can go wrong when you cook from the flame of your heart andsunny mindset.

Buon appetito.

Namaste.

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