Preserved Lemon Risotto

Preserved Lemon Risotto
This is risotto has a bright lemon flavor that is moreish. To make a creamy delicious risotto it’s not as difficult as it seems. In this recipe you add all the liquid at once; giving you time to do something else.
8 servings as an appetizer or a side dish 6 as a main course

3 cups chicken stock homemade
3 cups water
½1/2 teaspoon saffron threads
6 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 large leek, or one onion chopped in1/4 -inch pieces
2 1/4 cups Arborio or Carnaroli rice
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup white wine or dry vermouth
3 ounces lemon juice
1/2 cup mascarpone
1/2 preserved lemon, finely chopped
Chives or lemon zest for garnish
11/2 ounces freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese

1. Put the stock, water and saffron in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer. Place a 2 1/2+ quart Dutch oven (or saucepan) over medium heat; add 3 tablespoons of the butter. When the butter has melted add the leek/onion and a pinch of salt. Cook until soft and translucent about 3-4 minutes.

2. Add the rice and cook, stirring occasionally, until translucent about 2-3 minutes. Add a little salt and pepper then the wine or vermouth cook until the liquid is completely reduced. Heat the serving dishes for the risotto.

3. Add boiling stock all at once, stirring vigorously to mix well until it comes to a simmer. Cook for about 10 minutes over medium heat; it should simmer gently. The mixture should be neither soupy nor dry. Remove the cover and begin tasting the rice after about 8 minutes; to check the texture (you want it to be tender like a soft walnut). If the rice needs to cook more you may need to add more hot water or stock. Continue to taste the rice for doneness. It could take as long as 15 minutes to reach this stage. The risotto should be runny at this stage and the rice al dente. It will be creamy as it cools down.

4. Stir in the lemon juice, the remaining 3 tablespoons butter, preserved lemon, and Parmigiano Reggiano mix fast to help make it creamier. Fold in the mascarpone; it helps to maintain its creamy consistency even as it’s cooling at the table. Taste and correct the seasoning.

5. Serve in hot wide soup bowls or plates and garnish with chives or lemon zest.

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Copyright © Julie Logue Riordan, Cooking with Julie