How to Make Risotto – Risotto is a north Italian rice dish made with Arborio, Carnaroli and Vialone Nano rice & cooked in a broth to a creamy consistency.

You can stir up the perfect risotto every time you make it. Although it may sound intimidating to cook, this ultimate culinary dish is a breeze once you know the basics. In fact, the secret of faultless risotto is about paying attention to the last minute details. That’s it!

Almost every extravagant restaurant has risotto on their menu. However, there are many types of rice used for this incredible dish. The most common types of rice include Arborio, Carnaroli and Vialone Nano. Choosing the correct rice is important. This is because each type of rice has different starch content. The rice you select should depend on the type of risotto you are preparing and individual preference.

Arborio Rice:

  • This type of rice is the most commonly used for risotto. It has the highest amount of soft surface starch. Because of its starch content, it makes an extra creamy risotto. However, Arborio rice can become sticky and tends to lose its shape a little during cooking.

Carnaroli Rice:

  • This type of rice is well balanced, has thin long grains and is creamy when cooked. It also holds its shape a lot better than Arborio rice. Carnaroli rice is recommended for simple and sophisticated risottos with a few extras.

Vialone Nano Rice:

  • This type of rice is the most difficult to prepare. Vialone Nano has round and thick grains and will hold up to extra stirring. It is recommended for risottos that have a lot of hearty additions.

A Few More Tips:

  • Although risotto comes from northern Italy, it does not contain olive oil. Risotto is all about the cheese and butter. At the start, the rice and onions are cooked in butter. Then right before serving, well-flavored cheese and more butter are added.
  • Never use a metal spoon, it can damage the rice. Instead, gently stir the rice with a wooden spoon or silicone spatula.
  • Oftentimes, risotto is overcooked, very mushy and starchy. So, never overcook the rice. The rice should always be al dente. The perfect risotto is pleasingly chewy and coated in a delicate rich sauce.
  • Never add cold stock to a hot pan. It cools everything down and disrupts the cooking process. Keep the stock at a simmer in a small pan, so that everything cooks evenly.
  • Avoid stirring the rice constantly. It adds air to the risotto and can make it gummy. As well, do not forget to stir it. Otherwise it will stick to the bottom of the pan and burn. Stir often but not constant. Agitate the rice so the grains rub against each other to make a creamy risotto.
  • Slowly add the stock. Allow the rice to absorb the stock before you add more. Note: the ratio Arborio rice is about 4 cups of stock for every cup of rice.
  • Cook the rice over medium simmer heat until al dente.
  • Add pre-cooked vegetables to your risotto after the rice is finished cooking. Never cook your vegetables with the rice, always cook them separately.
  • Add your cheese such as Parmesan or mascarpone at the end of the cooking process. Fat will break down under heat and will have a horrible texture. When the rice is done cooking, you can stir in the cheese and also some fresh unsweetened whipped cream for a light and silky texture.

Best Cookware to Use:

  • Silicone Spatula
  • Small Pan