About Beth

Beth, along with her husband, Mike, is co-owner of two Italian Deli/Markets in St. Louis - Viviano’s Festa Italiano. When not creating yummy new menu items for the deli, she’s the pediatric research lab supervisor at Washington University School of Medicine. Read more out about Viviano’s Festa Italiano.

About Irene

Irene loves to think, read and dream about food. She enjoys cooking & eating in general. Although she demures about her talents, Irene has a finely-tuned palate that her friends envy. She bakes on occasion. The rest of the time she's creating memories with her family and friends. . . or she's learning a new needlecraft technique.

About Deborah

Deborah is a wife, mother, grandmother, traveler, bootlegger, and a very poor speller! As Victor Hazan so eloquently puts it, Deborah has chosen Umbria to be the home of her soul. When she can’t be there in body, she spends her free time cooking & reading about Italy. She blogs mostly about food and about trips – past and future – here: Old Shoes New Trip.

About Doug

Doug lives in Eastern Ontario in a farmhouse built in 1903. He is a retired teacher with four adult children, a wife, a son-in-law, two Irish step-grandchildren and one grandson who he is lucky to hang with a lot. He has way too many books. Doug also blogs at To Slow Time Down.

About Cindy

Cindy lives in Eagle River, Alaska where her freezer is always full of salmon, halibut & shrimp. Cindy participates in several regular cooking challenges. You can read more about her cooking and life in the last frontier on her blog, Baked Alaska.

About Sandi

Sandi is a true Southerner, but a traveler & Italian cook at heart. She lives in Alabama and knows more about fried green tomatoes than fricassees. Her family owned the WhistleStop Café for many years. Sandi also blogs at Whistlestop Cafe Cooking.

About Jan

Jan, a serious home cook, has owned “Essentials” since 1992. She is passionate about all things Italian, especially the cuisine & the language. Jan blogs about her travels (next trip Italy May/June of 2010) at: Keep your Feet in the Street.

About Jerry

Jerry is a food obsessed Canadian. He learned to love Italian food as a child while eating the meals prepared by his Napolitano uncle. He learned to cook Italian foods by watching his uncle cook these feasts for the family. This love of Italian food has been honed through serious personal experimentation in eating and cooking. Willing to try most anything once, Jerry isn't so sure about tripe! Jerry also blogs at Jerry's Thoughts, Musings, and Rants!

About Palma

Palma is a Marriage & Family Therapist in Palm Desert, CA. She’s an Italian-American with a passion for cooking, entertaining, & travel to Italy. She’s always planning her next culinary adventure to Italia on her blog, Palmabella's Passions

About Kim

Kim is our permanent sub and the image above gives you a good idea of the look on her face when she realized she was drafted. Kim loves to eat, drink, travel and cook - probably in that order. When she's not here, you can find her organizing and leading food, wine and beer tours in Europe as co-owner and operator of GrapeHops or blogging at What I Really Think.

« Orecchiette | Main | Risotto with Saffron, Milanese Style »

Risotto with parmigiano

Are y'all ready for an essential recipe?
This week's challenge for Pomodori e Vino is Risotto with Parmigiano-Reggiano.

Luckily I was able to carry some real Parmigiano -Reggiano back from Italy. FYI~you can bring back cheese that is wrapped and vacuum sealed. I ended up with the cheese in my carry-on. I sweated like a shoe-bomber everytime I went through security... But made it home with my precious cargo.
Y'all know I love Risotto and make it all the time. I was very excited to see Marcella's technique for making the risotto. She is in the 'stir constantly' school of risotto. (who am I to disagree with the master?)
"Add 1/2 cup of simmering broth and cook the rice, stirring constantly with a long wooden spoon, wiping the sides and bottom of the pot clean as you stir, until all the liquid is gone. You must never stop stirring and you must be sure to wipe the bottom of the pot completely clean frequently or the rice will stick to it."
This process is repeated with every 1/2 cup ladle of simmering broth. Until the risotto is tender, but not mushy. In the end... stir in butter and that fabulous parmigiano-reggiano.
The result is a beautifully flavorful risotto. I didn't have fresh truffle to shave over the top, but I did have a little white truffle sauce that was also tucked into my suitcase. How special is that?
Another brilliant adventure in The Essentials of Italian Cooking.

Ciao y'all,

Comments (7)

Sandi, all I can say to this is MMMMMMMMMmmmmmm.


Pitter patter, my heart is racing thinking about how delicious this would taste. No challenge for me to eat up an entire grande bowl full!!

brava Sandi!!

Yum! I *love* making risotto, too... (And I love Marcella, having fun following this blog!) I have been known to stop stirring, though , with no ill consequences (it's just unavoidable sometimes when you've got two kids under 6, and now that I know it doesn't hurt the dish, I'm a bit more easy-going about it).

It sounds delicious Sandi! What type of rice did you use? We are partial to Ferron's Carnaroli.

Susie~ I used Arborio rice. It's easy to find (even here in Alabama)

Marcella Hazan:

Sandi, thank you for believing in me. You've made a very successful exit from the pasta chapter. I could have set down a hundred different ways of making risotto. Aren't you glad I didn't? But none can surpass the basic risotto col parmigiano, especially when you can add a little truffle fragrance. I know that a great many people including Mario Batali think I am antediluvian for insisting that risotto be stirred continuously. I know it does no serious damage to stop. At a minimum, you'll have a bit of rice to scrape off the bottom of the pot. If you make a practice of stirring sporadically, you will end up using more liquid at one time than is desirable. It takes me exactly 25 minutes to make risotto. If you can manage to stir for 25 minutes your risotto will have a texture that no other method can match. Trust me. I hope you swirled in the butter and cheese off heat.

Did you know you could order aged P-R online from Parma?

Marcella~ of course I waited to stir in the butter and cheese until the very end. Risotto is one of my very favorites...no matter the ingredients.

Yum! As I'm reading your post, I'm heading home to make my risotto that will be posted next week. Can't wait to taste it.

Goodness Sandi - the way you're going through that parmigiano you'll need to head back to Bologna in a few weeks to buy more cheese! I still haven't opened my packages up . . . although we have friends coming over tonight for a wine and cheese feast . . .

I too have heard that never ending 'stir or not stir' debate - I may have commented on it in my risotto post - in the end who cares? If it works than stir. . . or not. I feel that the final texture is far more pleasing IF I stir than when I do not.

Well done!

Shame I wasn't closer - I have these three black truffles sitting here . . .

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