Risotto is the ultimate dish from the north of Italy. Versatile, it can be cooked with leftover ingredients to eventually end up to be the most delicious meal you've ever tried. That's what happened to me actually.
Today I am going to reveal my favourite go-to risotto recipe, where I use my leftover red wine. It may seem a controversial topic: I mean, who leaves wine behind? Jokes aside, for this recipe you will need up to two cups of red wine, I believe such amount can be easily spared for a delicious dinner.
Risotto is very popular in Piedmont, Italy, hence using local wines is going to guarantee a smooth but rich flavour: Dolcetto, Barbera and my personal favourite Nebbiolo. Medium-dry wines, full of juicy notes, will offer mouthwatering aroma and amazing purple colour to the dish.
Red Wine Risotto Recipe
2 Tbsp Olive oil
1 Tbsp butter
1,5 - 2 cups Arborio rice
1 medium onion
5-6 cups vegetable stock
2 cups Nebbiolo wine
0,5 cup blue cheese
Prepare the vegetable stock before cooking risotto and keep it warm.
Use a non-stick pot or pan with enough room for the ingredients and a soft spatula, wooden or plastic, so you don't crush the rice when stirring.
Heat olive oil on medium-high and add diced onion, sauté for a minute or two to sweat it out.
Add butter and Arborio rice, mix all for 3 minutes so the butter coats all the rice and it starts to turn light brown and give away nutty aromas.
Add a cup of red wine to deglaze the pan, reduce the heat and stir frequently so the rice doesn't stick and burn.
When the wine is almost reduced, add the second cup, bring the heat back to medium and keep stirring carefully. Don't go crazy with it, but risotto is a dish you need to be present for all the time.
When you see the liquid is absorbed add a ladleful of your stock. Repeat as needed when you see the stock reduction. Stir every other minute.
After 15-18 minutes start checking on the rice, take a bite to taste the consistency of it. It should be al denté, not overly soft, but pleasantly chewy. If it is still not ready, add some more stock. Don't worry if you're running low on it, you can water it down a tiny bit.
This is where you can add pepper to taste and maybe minced garlic.
When risotto is almost ready, add cheese and stir. I am one of few who don't appreciate blue cheeses, but I find red wine risotto to be a great dish to use it in and make it even creamier. Parmesan is also a great option.
Plate the risotto and spread it in an even layer.
Sprinkle some more cheese and enjoy!