Basic risotto: 10 meals!
Nutrition Info.(per serve)
5 1/2 cups vegetable stock
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1 teaspoon crushed garlic
1 1/2 cups arborio rice
1/2 cup dry white wine
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
Total fat 10g
Saturated fat 3g
Dietary fibre 1g
1 Heat stock in a saucepan and keep simmering until needed.
2 Heat oil in a heavy-based pan. Add onion and garlic. Cook for 1-2 minutes until soft. Add rice and stir for 1-2 minutes to coat with oil.
3 Add wine and stir until almost absorbed. Add some hot stock. Stir with a wooden spoon to prevent sticking to pan as it absorbs the liquid. Continue adding more liquid, stirring now and then, until absorbed. After about 20 minutes, rice will be cooked and creamy. If not, add more stock and continue heating until cooked. Add parmesan and stir to combine. Serve in large bowls.Note: Nutrition information and costings apply to basic recipe only.
Tomato, feta and pine nut risotto: (Pictured) Reduce stock to 4 cups and add one 400g can tomato purée to stock (Step 1). Toast 35g pine nuts by stirring over heat in a heavy-based frying pan. Stir through 100g chopped feta at the end of cooking. If preferred, garnish with chopped fresh mint or rosemary.
Smoked chicken, broccoli and almond risotto: Toast 35g slivered almonds by stirring over heat in a heavy-based frying pan. Cut 1 head of broccoli in small florets and steam until just cooked. When risotto is almost cooked, stir in 1 chopped lean smoked chicken breast and cooked broccoli. Continue cooking for at least 5 minutes. Serve topped with toasted almonds.
Mushroom risotto: Cook 200g sliced button mushrooms in 2 teaspoons reduced-fat spread. Add 1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley and set aside. Add 2 tablespoons lemon juice to stock (Step 1). Add cooked mushrooms at the end of cooking. Heat for 1-2 more minutes before serving. For a meaty option, add some lean bacon to onion and garlic (Step 2).
Risotto with prawns: Omit stock and parmesan. Instead, make stock first with 350g raw prawns in 5 1/2 cups boiling water with 1 bay leaf, a few sprigs fresh parsley and a few peppercorns. Cook for about 4 minutes then remove prawns and peel. Set aside to use as garnish. Return shells to saucepan and simmer for 10 more minutes. Strain. Return broth to saucepan with 1 tablespoon tomato paste.
Risotto balls: Make one of the risotto variations (above). Stir 2 lightly beaten eggs through cooled risotto and shape mixture (with hands) into egg-sized balls. If mixture is too moist, add breadcrumbs (1 tablespoon at a time) until mixture holds. Poke a hole in the centre of each ball and fill with 1 mozzarella cube. Close hole over with rice mixture. Spread a little flour on a plate. Beat another egg in a shallow bowl with 2 tablespoons trim milk. Place some toasted wholemeal breadcrumbs in another shallow bowl. Roll each ball in flour, dip in egg mixture then roll in breadcrumbs. Heat olive oil in a heavy-based frying pan. Fry balls (in batches) until crisp and golden. Drain on paper towels while other balls are cooking. Serve hot. (Note: this makes enough for 6-8 serves.)
Leek and lemongrass risotto: Thinly slice 1 large leek. Cook with onion and garlic (Step 2). Grate 1 lemon for zest and save lemon juice. When rice is cooked and creamy, add lemon rind and lemon juice with 2 sliced spring onions, 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley and 2 tablespoons finely sliced lemongrass. Heat through. Serve topped with freshly ground black pepper.
Baked risotto: Make one of the risotto variations (above). Stir 2 lightly beaten eggs through cooled risotto and spoon into a greased springform or ring tin. Press down and bake at 170°C for about 30-40 minutes, or until firm and lightly browned. Allow to cool for 5 minutes then turn out and serve.