Red wine risotto
Skill level: Easy peasy
This classic risotto makes a fabulous starter for six or will serve four as a main course and is a stylish meal to serve to friends. Always use a good full-bodied red wine and good quality stock - it will only taste as good as the ingredients you use. If liked you can cook a few bacon lardons or streaky bacon with the shallots too. Stir in a little parsley at the end of cooking if liked. Make this and serve immediately as risotto becomes thick and stodgy if kept warm.
- 50g butter
- 1tbsp olive oil
- 4 shallots, peeled and finely diced
- 200g risotto rice
- 500ml red wine
- 2 sprigs thyme
- 500ml vegetable or chicken stock
- Grated Parmesan, to serve
Look for Carnaroli or Arborio rice – they are the classic little round grains of rice used to make a creamy risotto.
- Heat the butter and oil in a large shallow pan. Add the shallots and cook for 5 mins until softened but not browned.
- Add the rice and cook for 1 min until coated in the oil and butter. Add half the red wine and thyme and cook gently, stirring continuously, until the wine has been absorbed. Add a ladle full of the stock and cook gently, stirring continuously until the stock has been absorbed.
- Continue adding the boiling stock and wine a little at a time until it has all been absorbed and the rice is rich, creamy, and tender. Remove the thyme sprigs. Season to taste and sprinkle with Parmesan to serve.