I have made Risotto before, without much success. At one stage I really thought that making risotto is way too much effort and I could not understand the hype surrounding this! Well, that was until I have recently eaten a vegetarian risotto at the River Garden restaurant at Lourensford.
The risotto was extremely nice and I decided I just have to master this. I have tried a couple of times before mine tasted almost as good. I have realized that making risotto is like learning to ride a bicycle. It takes some time and practice but once you have mastered the technique it is quite an easy thing to do.
I think the most important thing to remember when making risotto is that you have to use the correct type of rice; Arborio rice is perfect. The next important thing is that it needs your full attention and you must stir and add liquid all the time!
This risotto is really delicious and can be served as a vegetarian meal or as a side dish.
800ml vegetable stock
2 cloves of garlic, minced
45ml olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
250g brown mushrooms, cleaned and chopped
300ml Arborio rice
60ml dry white wine
rind of one lemon
salt and black pepper
chopped fresh coriander or basil leaves to garnish
Heat the vegetable stock and add the minced garlic.
Heat the oil and butter in a heavy-based saucepan and add the onion and sauté until golden brown.
Add the mushrooms and cook briefly and then add the rice and nutmeg. Stir with a wooden spoon until coated with the oil mixture.
Add the dry white wine and cook until absorbed.
Add the vegetable stock, 60ml at a time, and stir until the stock is absorbed before adding the next 60ml. The whole process takes about 30 minutes.
Add the lemon rind and season with salt and pepper and remove from the heat.
Garnish with the freshly chopped coriander or basil leaves. Leave to stand, covered for 2 minutes before serving.