Every now and again, it’s fun to take a classic dish and spin it around, a bit.
I think it’s reasonably common knowledge that risotto is made with a short-grained rice – arborio is probably the best known and most readily available in the USofA, and carnaroli and vialone nano are two others that I really like. The short grained rice is starchier, which results in the creamy texture that a good risotto is known for.
That being said, with a little bit of time and effort, you can switch things up a bit and still get great results.
Tonight, I used a whole grain wild rice blend and carnaroli rice. I cooked off a half-cup of the rice blend in advance – it takes 45 minutes to cook on a good day – and then combined them for the risotto. The end result was pretty darned tasty.
The base, tonight, was ham and mushrooms. I diced up some of the ham from the other night that was portioned and frozen, along with a 10oz package of mushrooms. Into the pan they went, stirring and cooking until the ham was lightly browned and the mushrooms had let off their liquid. Then I added a minced clove of garlic.
Next into the pan went a half-cup of carnaroli rice. I stirred it around until it just started to get translucent. Then I added the cooked, drained wild rice blend and mixed it all together.
Then a half-cup of white wine went in. I stirred and cooked it down and then added hot ladles of chicken broth, stirring along until it was absorbed, before adding the next.
When it was all nice and absorbed, I added a half-cup of shredded Italian cheeses – and it really got creamy. I added a pinch of salt and pepper – nothing else was needed.
Rich, creamy, tons of flavor and lots of texture.
Simplicity in a bowl.