I’ve written about risotto before. It’s a staple food in this house, but with my short attention span I like to mix it up as much as possible. Mark usually is in charge of risotto but I tackled this one – Hugh Fearnley Whittingstalls Tomato Risotto. Everything for the basic recipe was already in the house, but we bought some rocket for our packed lunches and its peppery punch was fantastic with the sweet tomatoes. I also threw in four ice cubes of red wine in with the rice before the stock stage. Yes, I freeze wine. Yes, I have leftover wine! (Sometimes). Sure the kids will sleep well tonight!
Tomato and mozzarella risotto
If you don’t have fresh stock, use a high-quality cube or granules. (We always use Marigold bullion in the purple tub) Serves two. (I doubled it)
450ml vegetable stock
1 tin tomatoes, crushed
1 large knob butter
1 small onion, peeled and finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, peeled and finely chopped
125g risotto rice
1 ball buffalo mozzarella
Extra-virgin olive oil, to finish
Put the stock and tomatoes into a saucepan, bring to a gentle simmer and keep over a very low heat.
Meanwhile, heat the butter in a saucepan over a low heat. When foaming, add the onion and sweat it for eight to 10 minutes, until soft. Add the garlic and cook for a minute or two more, then add the rice and cook, stirring, for a couple of minutes.
Now start adding the hot stock and tomato mixture, about a quarter at a time. Let the risotto cook, stirring often, adding more stock as it is absorbed. After 20-25 minutes, the rice should be cooked with just a hint of chalkiness in the middle and you should have used up all the stock and tomato mix.
Stir in some salt and pepper, then tear the mozzarella into chunks and add. Cover, leave for a minute, then stir the melting cheese through the rice, so there are lots of nice, stretchy, melty bits. Serve topped with a generous trickle of extra-virgin olive oil, with some peppery leaves on the side.