Friday, June 02, 2006


Risotto, my latest obsession. For the past 2 weeks, it has been the only thing that I want to cook in my kitchen and talk to people about, with one conversation leading to dinner plans with a mutual risotto-lover friend at an Italian restaurant all in the name of tasting research! In search of that perfect al dente, creamy bowl of rice, I decided to conduct some technical research: firstly read, re-read and cross-referenced various sources that explained the technique of making the perfect risotto and compare recipes and the proportion of rice to stock.

This is what I’ve learnt from my self-thought risotto cooking lesson. Surprisingly, risotto is not that too difficult to make. I’m not sure if you should stir vigourously or not. I think at the moment I’m going to the “stir occasionally” school of thought. Logically through observation, stirring the rice too often might disturb it from absorbing the hot stock and not stirring at all might be prejudicing the grains at the bottom and might have the risk of burning the bottom.

As with most things, stock forms the basis of cooking. Sometimes I cheat and use ready to use stock that comes in a tetra pack, but I often find that my sauces, soups or whatever end product I’m trying to achieve usually turns out too salty. So for my risotto experiment, I was not prepared to muck about, so I collected my chicken carcasses and mire poix and did some diligent simmering.

The first risotto attempted: wild mushroom risotto. Flavour was my number one issue with the risotto, so I had a variety of wild mushrooms and decided to finish off with my terribly delicious tetsuya’s truffle butter. I’m rather pleased with the way the first attempt turned out, more tweaking needs to be done, but I think I did pretty well to put my risotto obsessed mind at rest for a while.

Wild mushroom risotto
Serves 4

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 medium onion, minced
2 cups Arborio rice
1/2 cup white wine
4 cups chicken stock, hot
300 g mixed wild mushrooms
4 tablespoons truffle butter
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano + extra


1. Heat olive oil in a 12 to 14-inch heavy bottom pot or dutch oven over medium heat.
2. Add onion and fry for 8 to 10 minutes, stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon or silicon spoon, or until softened and translucent but not browned
3. Add rice and stir with a wooden spoon until toasted and opaque.
4. Add wine to the toasting rice and 2/3 cup of stock and cook, stirring, until it is absorbed.
5. Continue adding 2/3 cup at a time, waiting until the liquid is absorbed before adding more. Just before adding the last 2/3 cup of stock, add mushrooms. Cook until the rice is tender and creamy and yet still a little al dente, about 15 minutes.
6. Remove from heat, add butter and cheese and cover pot and leave for 2 minutes. Remove lid and stir and mix well.
7. Divide risotto into 4 portions and serve with extra cheese.

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Blogger bean said...


Apologies for the offtopic comment, but do u happen to know where to find good udon here?

10:52 AM  
Blogger joone! said...

hey bean,

You can try waraku (there are a few outlets, but the one i know best is at sturhub building). If my memory doesn't fail me, i think they have handmade udon there, and i've seen a signage for handmade udon at the japanese restaurant at carlton hotel.

10:37 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

where can I get those arborio rice in Singapore?

11:43 AM  

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