As an unashamed lover of nearly all starches and carbs, parmesan risotto is one dish I simply cannot turn down.  Ever.  With such a harmonious blend of cream, cheese and salt, what’s not to love? 

One of my favorite aspects of risotto is that so many ingredients can be used, and it also pairs so well with a vast range of hearty, meaty entrees.  Or veggies.  Or whatever you’re in the mood for, really.

parmesan risottoOf course I was initially terrified of tackling the seemingly daunting task of making my own risotto.  For my first time, I have to admit:  I bought the pre-seasoned packet of risotto which required minimal effort, hoping the end product would resemble the creamy rice dish I love so much.  After being mildly disappointed with the lack of flavor and excitement that method provided me, I decided to suck it up and finally make it myself.  Creamy parmesan risotto is the perfect way to introduce yourself to this wonderful dish, and you can always add more flavors to it as your confidence in preparing it increases!

parmesan risottoI once was publishing a food / restaurant magazine, and I interviewed a friend of mine about why she considered herself to be a foodie.  One of my questions near the end of the interview was, “What is the biggest cooking accomplishment you’ve achieved at home?”  Her answer was quick; required almost no thought:  ‘risotto’.  In that moment, which was about four years ago, I thought to myself, “There is no way I could ever attempt to make that shit.  Nope.  Good for her for being way more accomplished than I could be!”

Luckily, as my love for flavors, textures, and cooking evolved, so did my confidence in the kitchen.  Eventually, I did attempt it and I must admit:  I achieved success.  This is really not as hard as it seems, I promise.  You can totally do this, and the result is worth it though!

parmesan risottoI do have a side note for this recipe.  After doing basic online research on risotto, I’ve read that TRUE risotto never has fat added at the end of the dish.  This blog post by Spinach Tiger was extremely informative and although I didn’t exactly follow all recommendations, it was nice to have an insightful look into what I was making.  For me, adding cream at the end provides another layer of creamy richness that is irresistible.  If you would rather be true to form, only add the fat at the beginning of cooking, according to Spinach Tiger.

parmesan risottoSo, at last, it’s risotto time!  You’ll thank yourself for trying this, and the reward is spoonful after spoonful of creamy risotto right in your face.  🙂 

[my additional tips!]:

Actual Prep / cook time:  45 minutes

Clean-up difficulty:  1

Overall difficulty to make:  3 [just keep your attention on what you’re doing.]

Overall satisfaction:  9 [amazing flavor!]

Price range?  This dish is under $2 for two.

What I would change next time?  I wouldn’t change anything!

For your own version, I recommend:

  • Garnish is always appreciated by risotto, but not necessary.  I did buy green onion specifically to top this with, but decided to let it fly solo instead.  Green onion provides a nice bite that cuts through the richness of the risotto, but any green garnish would look lovely atop this pillow-y bed of heaven!

© 2015 : a flavor journal : by sara alvord
creamy parmesan risotto.
Serves 2
Creamy parmesan risotto is a rich, decadent dish that is perfect to highlight any savory meat, veggie or fish entree. Date night will never be the same!
Print
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
40 min
Total Time
45 min
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
40 min
Total Time
45 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 clove garlic, minced
  2. 1/4 cup white onion, finely diced
  3. 1 T butter
  4. 1 T olive oil
  5. 1/2 cup [dry] arborio rice
  6. 2 1/2 cups chicken stock
  7. 1/2 tsp black pepper
  8. 2 T whipping cream
  9. 1/3 cup freshly shredded parmsean
Instructions
  1. Under a large saucepan, turn burner to medium-low heat, add butter and olive oil.
  2. Once heated, add garlic and onion and cook for 5 minutes, until onion is translucent and garlic is very fragrant.
  3. Add dry rice all at once, and coat all grains with butter/olive oil mixture. About 2 minutes.
  4. Add only 1/2 cup chicken stock at a time, waiting until most of it is absorbed by the rice before adding the next half cup. So, add first half cup. Gently stir around pan for quite a few minutes, until most of the liquid is absorbed.
  5. Add next half cup chicken stock, stir continuously until almost entirely absorbed.
  6. Repeat this until 2 1/2 cups of chicken stock have been used. You will begin to notice a difference in consistency and texture of the rice.
  7. Once final half cup is nearly absorbed, add heavy cream and grate parmesan over pan. Stir together until cream is absorbed, and cheese is melted.
  8. Crack a little black pepper over the top and stir until totally integrated.
  9. Serve hot and ENJOY!
Notes
  1. Do pay attention to the consistency and texture of the rice once you get to the end of the chicken stock. You should notice the rice thickening up and clinging together, or really start to resemble risotto. It will not be hard to stir, but your spoon will not glide through the pan as easily as it has up to this point. That's when you know you're almost done!
Adapted from The Pioneer Woman
Adapted from The Pioneer Woman
a flavor journal. http://aflavorjournal.com/