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Speciality Dish - Italy


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Risotto is a dish whose origins lie with the poorer working classes of Italy. Originally, it was just rice cooked in a broth with whatever other ingredients were available - usually not much – and was used as a means of a cheap stomach filler. This was definitely not a dish favoured or eaten by the nobility in the middle ages.


Risotto as we know it today, only began to appear during the 19th century when the method of toasting the grains before slowly adding the hot liquid was more widely practised. It was also at this time that risotto became acceptable to the upper classes and a national dish was born.


There are 3 essentials to cooking a good risotto: The correct type of rice - Arborio (risotto) rice; a well flavoured stock; and TIME. Count on at least 30 minutes cooking time all in all, sometimes longer depending on the recipe. The end dish should have a quite wet and creamy texture.


The beauty of this dish is that you can use any ingredients available to flavour it: meats, fish, poultry, vegetables, herbs – whatever you have to hand. After all, that’s how the dish was born.


Below are two classic Risotto dishes to get you started, but you can find more Risotto dishes throughout the site. Use the search form to find them all.  Although the Italians would normally serve Risotto as a starter and occasionally as an accompaniment to main courses, the recipes featured on this page  are sufficient to serve as main courses.


Happy Cooking!


Risotto Bianco    Veg   HT   MC    Italian  40mins

Mushroom Risotto     Veg  HT  MC  Italian  40mins


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