Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Lemon Risotto (Rachael Ray)

My son and I love eating sourish food and naturally, we love love love lemons.

I remember when my son was a baby (maybe 7-8 months old), the bored and cheeky me decided to give him a lemon to try, thinking that he will have a sour-face and spat the lemon on me... I had a towel and his water bottle on my side while I was doing this and I was totally surprised that he loved it. He eventually sucked all the juice out of the lemon wedges that I gave him and finished them with a satisfying smile! Is my son a strange baby? I think so too - LOL!

After cooking and enjoying Bill Granger's risotto with a good hint of lemony tang, I'm brave enough now to cook another risotto and this time, I like to cook this with lots and lots and lots and lots of lemons!!! I Googled the words, "Lemon Risotto" and found a few good recipes... Among all, I'm keen to try this recipe from Rachael Ray after reading its description, "This risotto is super-tangy but you'll still want to kiss it...

In this recipe, Rachael Ray has described the entire process of cooking risotto very well. After cooking this, I reckon that I have fully conquer the fear of cooking risotto. However, the only disadvantage of this recipe is that I have to stand next to the hot stove, cook and stir the rice for 18 minutes. With Bill Granger's oven baked recipe, I don't.

With no doubt, we love "kissing" our very-lemony-cheesy risotto... not purely because we are fans of lemon as this risotto dish is really really really good. To be honest, I reckon that in a perspective of most ordinary non-sour-food tolerating person, the sourness of this dish is actually pretty good... Good in term of tasty and also having a good balance for most taste buds.

Now, check out these feedback after our dinner...

Boy: Are these all the lemon you have?
Dad: Where is the meat?

As usual... LOL! I like to ignore these feedback. I know that they like this risotto because all four servings of these were gone!

lemon risotto Rachael Ray
Very lemony risotto
Making full use of these two lemons to cook this dish :)
Heat stock prior and while cooking the risotto...
Start by doing this...
then this...
Keep adding hot stock and cook for 18 mins
Stir in these plus lemon juice and sections...
Serve with herbs and freshly ground pepper
Every spoonful of these is so kiss-able!!!
Thumb up from my boy: Lemon is yummmm...

Here is the recipe from Food Network
(with my modification and notes in blue)

1 quart chicken stock (I used 1L of salt reduced one)
2 cups water (I didn't need to use this at all)
1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
1 small to medium onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped or grated
1 cup Arborio rice
2 lemons
1/2 cup white wine
(I used Semillon Sauvignon Blanc)
1/2 tsp sugar
2 tbsp butter, cut into small pieces
1/2 cup grated pecorino cheese, a couple of handfuls
( I used the aged ones, added 80g into risotto and had 50g to serve)
2 tbsp slivered mint leaves
(replaced with chervil which has slight minty and liquorice-like after-taste)
A handful basil tops, shredded or torn
salt and freshly ground black pepper

(Didn't need to add anymore salt as the saltiness is just right for us)

In a large pot, heat the stock and 2 cups water (I didn't add the water) over medium low heat.

In a risotto pot or large skillet with a rounded bottom, heat the extra-virgin olive oil over medium to medium-high heat. Add the onions and garlic to pan and saute to soften 3 to 4 mins.

Stir in the rice and add the zest of 1 lemon. Heat the rice for 1 to 2 mins, then add the wine and cook until evaporated. Add in the hot stock, a few ladles at a time, and stir for a minute with each addition, to develop the starch and the creamy aspect. Total cooking time will be about 18 mins or so. Keep adding stock each time the pan starts to become dry at the edges.

While the rice cooks, peel and supreme or section the flesh of a lemon and finely chop. Sprinkle with sugar. When rice is cooked to al dente, stir in the butter, lemon sections, juice of 1 lemon, the cheese and herbs. Season with salt (no extra salt for us) and pepper, to taste, and transfer to a serving bowl. Serve immediately.

Happy Cooking
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  1. Gong Hei Fatt Choy & Happy New Year..
    Am back (to work) today after 1 week of hibernation (from the blog world)..
    I seldom have risotto (unless I eat out in restaurants, but that's seldom after having 2 kids) but your food always look nice & tempting ya know?
    Risotto = cheesy soupy sticky rice with more cheese, yummzzz !!

  2. This risotto looks delicious Zoe...I might give this a try since I have lots of lemon from my tree...first time in years...
    I love the thumb up picture :D
    Have a great week!

  3. I have tried a lemon risotto with mozzarella cheese before, it was fabulous! I am sure this recipe will do the same :)

  4. Nice risotto! I also love lemons, so will put it on my list :)

  5. am too a lover of sourish food and this looks really yummm

  6. Your lemon risotto looks good, Zoe. I've never tried risotto. I shd give it a try soon. It is funny that yr son likes lemon since a baby. Most babies don't. And I know some adult don't either. My family like Lemon until I tried to plant it but so far no fruits yet :(

  7. Hi Zoe! Gong Xi Fa Cai! Hmm...lemony risotto sounds lovely. I only had risotto once and I did not really like it because it is soggy. Maybe I am not used to it. Will try do do something with lemon for the LTU event :)

  8. Haven't made a risotto yet. This tangy one seems to be perfect for me. Loved that cutie thumbs up from your lil one.

  9. Lemon and cheese always makes a perfect combination, thumbs up for this!!!

  10. I am so tickled by the story that your son loves lemons! This lemon risotto looks refreshing!

  11. Happy lunar New Year! Love love lemons. I should try a lemon risotto too!

  12. Yes, I too love lemon. The smell from fresh one is amazing :)

  13. That is such a cute story, Zoe. Believe it or not, I still eat lemons right out of the skin. I LOVE them. So, of course, I would definitely love Lemon Risotto. I must admit though, I don't always have the patience to stand over the stove so long. Lazy me, lol...Thank you so much for sharing, Zoe...

    Thank you so much for all the kind words you leave on my blog too, Zoe. You are too sweet:)

  14. Hi Zoe , I have to try the risotto , I know you enjoyed your son as a baby and still do , babies are so cute and surprisingly funny , never know how they will react , but it's fun , thanks for sharing :)

  15. I love risotto. And I really love lemon! But I've never thought to combine the two. This looks wonderful -- thanks.

  16. Another thumb's up!

    Love the label on your wine bottle. So cute.

  17. I love risotto but have never tried a lemon one - this sounds awesome! Hehe, that's such a cute story about your son, my son is the same and loves eating lemons straight up too - I totally thought I would see that squinty face the first time I let him try it and then he surprised us and wanted more like your son :)

  18. Hi Zoe, I'm loving the sound of this risotto! Must give it a go one day. I've just cooked something with lemon, will link it in with this theme. Cheers :)

  19. Haha, Zoe I guess it's smart of you to train him from young. He definitely is a boy who loves lemons. I think the only man in my family that loves lemons would be my dad. Mr G is also one who loves sweet stuff instead of the sourish stuff. Lucky you!! I haven't tried risotto (a make or break dish in the Masterchef kitchen ;P) but yours look really good. I love it!

  20. Very interesting to have simply a lemon risotto. I love your little experiment with your son haha!

  21. My family love to eat Risotto. Thanks for sharing this lovely yummy dish.