I found this recipe in a newspaper on the Tube ages ago and it’s one of my favourites. I’d make it every day if saffron wasn’t more expensive than gold. I’m not exaggerating, it really is that delicious. Also I’ve always wondered, making risotto is such a labor intensive process, so how do they do it in restaurants? Is there one guy whose sole job it is to watch the risotto? Who knows.
(The lovely color comes from the saffron)
Milanese Saffron Risotto
Adapted from a Nigella Lawson recipe
1 teaspoon of saffron threads
1 1/4 cups of vegetable or chicken stock
1/2 cup chopped shallots
3 1/2 tablespoons butter, plus 1 additional tablespoon
1 cup arborio rice
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 tablespoon olive oil
4 tablespoons grated parmesan, plus extra to serve
Salt and pepper to taste
(You may as well grate more parmesan over the top. Am I right?)
Heat the stock in a saucepan, add the saffron threads and put over the lowest heat just to keep it warm.
Melt the 3 1/2 tablespoon of butter and 1 tablespoon of oil in a wide, shallow saucepan over a low to medium heat, add the chopped shallots and cook for a couple of minutes or so, stirring frequently with a wooden spoon, until softened.
Add the risotto rice and keep stirring for a minute or so, then turn up the heat and add the marsala wine, which will bubble up excitedly. Keep stirring until it is absorbed.
Start ladling in the hot, golden, saffron-infused stock, allowing each ladleful to absorb as you stir before even thinking of adding the next. Stir and ladle the stock into the rice until it is cooked but still has a slight bite to it. This should take about about 20 minutes by which time you should have finished all your stock.
Turn off the heat, stirring still, and beat in the remaining tablespoon of butter and the grated parmesan, then season to taste. Top with additional parmesan
(I realised that this picture makes it look like Sam and I are splitting this bowl of risotto.
No. We like to eat way more than that. That is just one serving.)