Sunday, April 19, 2009

Fresh Corn Risotto with Basil, Tomato and Lime

This recipe was adapted from The Joy of Cooking: All About Vegetarian. The recipe calls for fresh ripe tomatoes and fresh corn and implies that this is a perfect Summer dish. I am sure that fresh from your August garden corn and tomatoes would make this dish all the better, but I live in Northern California were temps can be well over 100 degrees in the Summer. I for one do not make risotto in the Summer. If it is 100 degrees outside, I can guarantee you it is 120 degrees over that pot of rice. I make this in the cooler months and rely on frozen corn and store bought hot house tomatoes.

1 cup diced, seeded peeled tomatoes
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil or 1 teaspoon dried
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
5 cups vegetable broth
2 cups corn kernels, fresh or frozen
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 1/2 cups Arborio rice
1/2 cup dry white wine
Grated Parmesan cheese
  1. Combine tomato, basil, lime juice and salt. Set aside.
  2. Bring broth to a simmer and keep warm.
  3. Cut kernels off of cob, if using fresh. Steam until just cooked. Puree one cup of the corn kernels in a food processor.
  4. Heat a large saucepan, add the butter. Cook over medium heat until the foam subsides. Add the minced garlic and cook until fragrant. Add the rice and stir until coated with the butter.
  5. Add the wine and cook, stirring, until absorbed. Add 1 cup of the warm broth and cook over medium-low heat, stirring until broth is absorbed. Continue to add the broth, 1/2 cup at a time, cooking and stirring each time until the liquid is almost completely absorbed before adding more broth, this should take about 15 minutes and you will use 2 cups of broth in this step.
  6. Stir in the pureed corn and another 1/2 cup of broth, cook and stir until the broth is absorbed. Continue to cook, stirring and adding broth, 1/2 cup at a time, as needed until the rice is tender but with a slight firmness to the center of the grain, about 5 to 10 minutes more.
  7. Remove from the heat. Add the corn kernels and the tomato mixture, stir until the liquid from the tomato mixture is absorbs.
  8. Spoon into warmed bowls and sprinkle each serving with grated Parmesan cheese.

General risotto tips

  • Use the right kind of rice. Arborio rice should be your first choice.
  • Use a large, heavy saucepan and NEVER cover the cooking risotto.
  • Time: risotto takes time! You have to be patient. Do not rush the rice when it is absorbing the liquid. Expect to spend 20-30 minutes just on tooking time and DO NOT try and multi-task while cooking risotto. You have to stir the rice almost constantly.
  • Have all your ingredients ready and at hand. Have the broth on one burner and rice going on the other. I keep my broth on a medium-low heat to keep it warm. Pre-measure the size of your ladel so that you can simple ladel your broth into your rice. That way you do not have to fool with using a measuring cup for each 1/2 cup of broth.

This is an example of rice that is ready for more liquid. It should look like the spoon is parting the rice sea. Please ignore the broth can in the middle of my stove. This is left over from filling up the other saucepan with broth. DO NOT put cold or cool broth into your rice.

1 comment:

  1. This looks so good. why am i intimidated by risotto. i have made it well once before...i need to get back to making flavorful rice dishes.


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