This is a great way to dress up a simple dinner or to handle unexpected guests. Pick up a rotisserie chicken or two or a vegetable stir-fry, and a precooked vegetable, such as asparagus vinaigrette. Make this risotto, open a bottle of wine and everyone will think you’re amazing.
Roasted Red Pepper Risotto
- 1 cup short-grain brown rice 250 mL
- 1 cup water 250 mL
- 1 tbsp olive oil 15 mL
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 2 tbsp diced pancetta, optional 30 mL
- 1⁄2 tsp sweet or hot paprika 2 mL
- 1⁄4 tsp freshly ground black pepper 1 mL
- 1⁄2 cup dry white wine or additional stock 125 mL
- 11⁄2 cups reduced-sodium chicken or vegetable stock 375 mL
- 3⁄4 cup diced roasted red peppers (about 2) 175 mL
- 2 tbsp freshly grated Parmesan cheese 30 mL
- 1. In a bowl, combine rice and water. Stir well. Cover and set aside for at least 3 hours or overnight. Drain, reserving liquid
- 2. In a heavy saucepan with a tight-fitting lid, heat oil over medium heat for 30 seconds. Add onion and pancetta, if using, and cook, stirring, until onion softens, about 3 minutes. Add paprika and black pepper and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add wine and cook, stirring, until liquid evaporates, about 5 minutes. Add stock and reserved soaking liquid and bring to a boil. Stir in rice and return to a boil. Reduce heat to low. Cover and simmer for 35 minutes.
- 3. Stir in red peppers. Simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until liquid is absorbed and rice is tender, about 15 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in Parmesan. Serve immediately.
- Risotto with Cabbage: Substitute 2 cups (500 mL) thinly shredded cabbage (preferably Savoy) for the roasted red peppers and 1⁄2 tsp (2 mL) dried thyme leaves for the paprika.
- Smoked Cheese Risotto: Omit pancetta, paprika and roasted red peppers. Add 2 cloves minced garlic, along with the onion. After the rice is tender (Step 3), stir in 1 cup (250 mL) shredded smoked Gouda or mozzarella until melted, then add Parmesan.
Judith Finlayson https://judithfinlayson.com/