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
½ 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, (see recipe below)
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.
5 lemons, organic
1 cup Diamond kosher salt, more if needed
1 cinnamon stick (3-4 inches)
8 coriander seeds
5 black peppercorns
1 bay leaf
freshly squeezed lemon juice, if necessary
1-quart sterile wide-mouth glass jar with tight fitting lid
1. Quarter the lemons from the top to within 1/4 inch of the bottom, sprinkle salt on the interior, then reshape the fruit. Save the excess salt that falls off to add to the jar as you are packing in the lemons in.
2. Cover the bottom of the Mason jar with salt 1/4 - 1/2 inch of salt. Pack in the lemons and push them down, adding more salt, and the spices between layers. Press the lemons down to release their juices and to make room for the remaining lemons. (If the juice released from the squashed fruit does not cover them, add freshly squeezed lemon juice — not chemically produced lemon juice and not water.*) Leave some air space before sealing the jar.
3. Let the lemons cure on the counter, shaking the jar each day to distribute the salt and juice. Do this for 30 days. The rind should be velvety soft. When the rind is soft and velvety you could refrigerate them.
I usually use 1/2 a preserved lemon in most recipes.
Rinse the lemons under cold running water. Separate the pulp from the rind. Use the rind per your recipe. If you think it needs a bit more use the pulp.
Copyright © Julie Logue Riordan, Cooking with Julie