One of the first dishes that I ever mastered, and something my family has been making for decades. There are two accompaniments -- freshly grated parmesan, and a large glass of red wine -- both of which are mandatory. —kschurms
medium shallots, finely diced
Italian pork fennel sausage, casings removed
dried porcini mushrooms, reconstituted in warm water and roughly chopped
dry white wine
warmed chicken stock
A large pinch of saffron
Freshly grated parmesan (for garnish)
Salt and pepper (to taste)
In This Recipe
Heat the oil and butter in a large, heavy-bottomed pan over a medium-low heat. Add the shallots and cook until slightly translucent, about 2 minutes. Add the sausage and break apart with your spatula until browns. When the sausage is halfway cooked through and nicely crumbled, add the mushrooms (discard the water you hydrated them in).
Once the mushrooms are well incorporated (a few minutes), turn the heat up a bit and add in the aborio rice to toast it. Once the rice looks less opaque, stir in the wine. Allow the wine to cook for ~3 minutes (you don't want too much of it to cook off).
Turn the heat down, add in 1 cup of the stock, and cover (or don't. Sometimes I feel anxious about covering it so I don't, it's really up to you don't overthink it). Stir periodically, making sure that nothing sticks to the bottom of the pot. When there is very little liquid left, and bubbles appear around the top, add in another cup of the stock and stir. Repeat this process until there is no stock left.
After pouring in the last cup of stock, add the saffron, as well as salt and pepper to taste. Keep in mind that the parmesan will add some salt as well. Once there is a very little amount of liquid left, taste the risotto. If the rice doesn't stick to your teeth, then it's done. Serve it in bowls, with a lot of fresh parmesan grated on top.