Thursday, December 27, 2012

Sweet Potato Risotto - Tip For Perfect Risotto Every Time!

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Ah Risotto... A wonderful side dish, a meal in itself (legendary among vegetarians), Lunch and I even take the left overs , mix with a couple eggs and have a fried rice style scrambled egg breakfast dish.

I am hoping to improve on my authentic Italian style cooking over the next year.  I have made risotto in the past, but not nearly enough.  Hundreds of varieties, little changes to add richness (add cream at the end) or Colors to match a main dish (red wine in place of white makes a pretty mauve color).  And just about any vegetables you can imagine.  Butternut Squash is the standard in Italian Risotto Con la Zucca.  This would be a more Southern style dish with the American Sweet Potato.  Not authentic Italian, but Delicious (and besides, I always have a sweet potato laying about somewhere).

I do have a tip to pass on that has greatly improved both the taste of my risotto, but also the time it takes to cook the dish.  Risotto is (in)famous for the amount of effort it takes to make.  My old recipe would take as long as an hour of nonstop stirring.  One simple logical step and the time is nearly cut in half.

Here's what I did...

Sweet Potato Risotto
 (Risotto con la Patate Dolci)

  • 3 TBS Olive Oil
  • 1 Medium Red Onion, Diced
  • 3 TBS White Wine
  • 3 Cloves Garlic, minced
  • 3 TBS Dried Italian Herb/Seasoning Mix
  • 1-1/4 Cup Arborio Italian Rice
  • 2 Medium Sweet Potatoes, peeled, quartered, cut into 1/4 inch slices
  • 2 Pinches Salt
  • Several turns of a Pepper grinder (S&P to taste)
  • 4-1/2 Cups Chicken Stock, to be used one cup at a time - HOT, simmering (or microwave)\d)
  • 1/2 Cup Grated Parmigiano-Reggiano Cheese
  • For garnish, Parsley, chopped
Cooking Directions
  1. In a large heavy bottomed skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat
  2. Add the Onions and saute for 3 minutes until onions start to soften
  3. Add the garlic to the onions and saute for another 2 minutes
  4. Add the Wine and the herbs and allow to simmer for 3-4 minutes
  5. Add the rice and stir for 1 minute until all of the rice well coated
  6. Add the Sweet Potatoes and one cup of the HOT (mine is fresh out of the microwave HOT) Chicken Stock and stir until the rice has absorbed all of the liquid, about 3-5 minutes.  If you do not heat the chicken stock, the risotto will take longer to absorb the liquid, the potatoes will not cook and the end product will be a bit gummy instead of creamy)
  7. Repeat with the remaining stock, one cup at a time, constantly gently stirring.
  8. When you add the last half cup of stock, taste one of the sweet potato pieces. Make sure the potatoes are cooked throughout, but still have a bit of bite. If needed, add an extra 1/2 cup of liquid and continue cooking (thickness of the slices is important to continue have the rice and potatoes cooked thoroughly at the same time... better too thin than too thick)
  9. When the last bit of liquid has been absorbed, remove from the heat, add the cheese and stir to combine (should melt quickly)
  10. Garnish with fresh parsley and serve HOT and Enjoy!

A few days ago I made a wonderful thick Pan Seared Filet Mignon.

This risotto was a wonderful choice as the side dish (es).  Root vegetable and rice starch all in one.

And with the bed of colorful risotto highlighting the meat it made for an awfully pretty plate

And delicious as well!


So,  I am pleased to list this as one of my Growing list of  "52 Authentic Italian Recipes"!!!

Well over 52 recipes actually as I just can't stop. The world's most popular cuisine, authentic, natural, organic, Farm to Table... the Italians started, perfected or embraced it before it became a fad. This page is a guide to Italian Cooking... For the home cook!  So, Cin Cin (toast) and Buon Appetito (Enjoy your Meal) to you all and let's Cook authentic Italian!


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