The unusual treatment of the add-ins for this risotto is inspired by Pasta L'Inverno from the "Silver Palate Good Times Cookbook." Allowing all the ingredients to hang out together for a couple of hours simultaneously intensifies and blends their wintery flavors. This powerhouse of creamy, earthy goodness makes a perfect dinner on a sub-zero day. —First We Eat
Three hours before serving
2 1/2 cups
farro, rinsed well in cold water.
1 1/2 tablespoons
St. Andre, or other triple-cream cheese, rind removed and cut into small pieces.
Put farro in a bowl and cover with cold water. Soak for at least two hours.
Mix all the other ingredients in a bowl. Cover and let sit at room temperature for at least two hours.
In a stockpot, bring the broth to a low simmer.
In a separate, large brasier or soup pot, saute the garlic in the olive oil over medium heat for two minutes.
Add drained farro to the pot, and saute for three minutes.
Add wine and stir frequently until it is completely absorbed.
Add stock 1/2 cup at a time, allowing each addition to absorb fully before adding more. Continue the process until the farro is al dente, using more broth or warm water if necessary.
* Note: It also may take LESS than five cups of broth to bring the risotto to al dente. After adding 3 1/2 cups, start tasting frequently until the farro is slightly chewy but not mushy.
Stir in the walnut, sage, cheese mixture from step 1, continuing to mix until the risotto is heated through. Adjust seasoning if necessary.