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  • Writer's picturechefalisonbiebs

Saffron Risotto

I remember the first time I learned to make risotto as a young cook. Slowly simmered rice to the perfect doneness. Seasoned with different vegetables, mushrooms, or saffron, then finished with creamy mascarpone cheese and butter. Velvety and rich, risotto is a treat I love cooking to this day.

The method is always the same but the ingredients can be anything you want to try. Happy cooking.

Preparation Time: 1½ hour

Cook Time: 1 hour

Yield: serves 4 people

Garlic Chips

¼ cup canola oil

6 cloves garlic, sliced thinly


6 cups vegetable or chicken stock

2 tsp salt

¼ tsp saffron threads

¼ cup garlic-infused oil

3 tbsp butter

½ white onion, diced fine

1¼ cup carnaroli rice

1 cup white wine

½ cup mascarpone cheese

2 oz Grana Padano cheese, grated

¼ cup butter

2 Roma tomatoes, seeded and diced

¼ cup celery heart leaves

Salt to taste

For the garlic chips

  • Prepare a fine mesh strainer over a mixing bowl.

  • Add the canola oil and garlic to a non-stick frying pan and turn it on medium-high heat.

  • Fry the garlic, stirring constantly until it just starts to turn light golden brown.

  • Turn off the heat and pour through the fine mesh strainer to stop the cooking immediately. The garlic can burn quickly.

  • Set the garlic aside and use the oil to cook the risotto.

For the risotto

  • Pour the stock and salt into a saucepot and turn it on medium heat. Bring the stock to a low simmer.

  • Turn off the heat, add the saffron threads and let steep for 15 minutes.

  • In a separate large high-sided frying pan heat the oil and butter together.

  • Add the white onion and sauté, stirring constantly, until it becomes translucent.

  • Now add the rice to the pan. Stir constantly and lightly toast the rice for 3 minutes.

  • Deglaze the pan with the white wine and cook until the wine has almost completely evaporated.

  • Turn the heat down low and start adding the saffron stock one cup at a time. Stir after each edition and allow the stock to be absorbed before adding more. Repeat this until the rice is tender.

  • Turn off the heat. Stir in the mascarpone, Grana Padano cheese, and butter to melt.

  • Serve in the center of a pasta bowl and garnish with the Roma tomato, celery leaves, and garlic chips.



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