Risotto Relay: Baked RisottoOctober 20, 2007 at 10:07 am | Posted in events, savory things | 11 Comments
How do you make risotto without all that standing over a pot and stirring? You cheat and bake it in the oven! Baked risotto is a technique I have read about in a few places, and I thought I would give it a shot for the Risotto Relay being held by Sathya and Liz, authors of the lovely blog The Baker & The Curry Maker.
All the recipes I’ve seen follow a very similar process. Cook the onions on the stovetop first, add in rice and liquid and bring to a simmer. Then chuck in your other ingredients and pop it in the oven at 400°F/200°C for about half an hour. I went ahead and riffed on a recipe for baked risotto with zucchini, tomato and parmesan from superstar Sydney chef Bill Granger, whose food I love. It is in his book bills food.
I obviously made a few additions to recipe I provide below. I sauteed a clove of minced garlic along with the onions. A splash of white wine went into the pot at the same time as the stock and chopped tomatoes. And finally, halfway though the oven-baking process, I stirred in some raw, peeled and de-veined shrimp. I know that seafood and cheese breaks the rules (so does baking your risotto, really), but I used the parmesan in the recipe anyway.
OK, I admit that this is doesn’t really give you that creamy starchiness that a traditional risotto has, but I will definitely make it again. If you are feeling a little lazy, it is a perfectly delicious and acceptable substitute for the real thing, and it is so versatile. Next time, I think I’ll try it with chicken and mushrooms…maybe I’ll add a little extra liquid partway through the cooking process and stir in a pat of butter when it’s done to see if I get a creamier end result.
Baked Risotto with Zucchini, Tomato and Parmesan– makes 4 servings
from bills food by Bill Granger
2 T extra virgin olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
1 t sea salt
1 cup arborio rice
1 1/2 cups chicken stock or water
14 oz can chopped Roma (plum) tomatoes
3 small zucchini, finely sliced
2 1/4 oz freshly grated Parmesan
freshly ground black pepper
2 T finely chopped fresh flat-leaf (Italian) parsley
shavings of Parmesan, for serving (optional)
-Preheat the oven to 400°F/200°C. Heat a 3-quart/3-litre capacity ovenproof dish (with a lid) over a medium heat.
-Add the olive oil, onion and sea salt and stir for 5 minutes, or until the onion is soft and translucent.
-Add the rice to the dish and stir for another minute. Add the stock or water and the chopped tomatoes and bring to simmering point. Stir in the zucchini and sprinkle with Parmesan and black pepper.
-Cover the dish and bake the risotto for 30 minutes, or until the rice is cooked. Scatter parsley over the top, sprinkle with Parmesan shavings if desired, and serve in the dish.