Sunday, December 12, 2010

Risotto al Limone

This is by far the most decadent risotto I've ever tasted.  And the most delicious.  Of course it is, it starts out with 7 tablespoons of butter and ends with 1 cup of creme fraiche.  What's not to love?  :)  And it's really very easy too, as are most risottos.  You just have to constantly stir them for 20-25 minutes.

Since I'm still picking gorgeous lemons from my tree, I made this as a side dish to grilled New York strip steaks some time over Thanksgiving weekend and it was a huge hit!

A friend of mine went to the Amalfi Coast on vacation this past summer and she spent a day at Mamma Agata's cooking school.  This recipe is an adaptation from Mamma Agata's.  I do hope you try it.  And fresh lemons are a must here.

Risotto al Limone 
Adapted from Mamma Agata
7 tablespoons butter
1 small shallot, finely sliced
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 1/3 cup Carnaroli or Arborio rice
Juice of 2 lemons
Zest of 1-2 lemons, finely grated
1 quart vegetable broth
1 cup creme fraiche
3 tablespoons finely chopped, flat leaf parsley
1/4 cup finely grated Parmigianno

Pour vegetable stock into a sauce pan and heat over medium heat until hot, but not boiling.  Keep simmering over low heat as you will add the simmering broth to the risotto, 1 cup at a time.  You may not need all the broth.  But if it seems like you'll run out of broth before the risotto is cooked, add a cup or 2 of water to the broth and heat through.  It won't affect the flavor of the risotto.  And you don't want to run out of hot broth before your risotto is cooked.  

Heat butter in large pan over medium heat.  Add shallot and saute until soft.

Add rice to the pan and stir until it becomes translucent.  Add the white wine and stir again until wine is absorbed into the rice.

Add the lemon juice, 1 tablespoon grated lemon zest, one ladle full of vegetable stock and a pinch of salt to the pan.  Cook until the liquid is absorbed.

Add another ladle of broth.  Cook the rice in the broth for 5 to 8 minutes per ladle, allowing the rice to absorb the broth before adding any more.

Once the liquid has been fully absorbed by the rice and it is fully cooked (this may take 20-30 minutes), add the creme fraiche and 2 tablespoons chopped parsley to the pan over low heat.  Stir well for 2 minutes until the cream is warm, but not boiling.

Plate the risotto and garnish with the remaining lemon zest, Parmigianno and chopped parsley.  Serve immediately.

Buon Appetito!


  1. My girlfriend made lemon risotta this summer with grilled fish and it was amazing!! We've since made it again as we both crave it!

  2. Hi Cat...I *love* lemon risotto! It's so refreshing and delicious. You should try this's decadent but soooo good!