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Giada's Two Tips For Making Perfect Risotto

29 April 2020
by Giada De Laurentiis
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In Italy, risotto is almost just as popular as pasta - and Giada has two tips to making the perfect plate of it.

When we think of Italian cuisine, the first starch that comes to mind is pasta. But in Italy, risotto is just as popular. Like pasta, it's something of a neutral canvas and can be flavored in many different ways.
Many people see risotto as something that can be intimidating to make, but I actually find it to be very simple and doable - it's just a process that requires some patience and attention. As long as you aren't in a rushed hurry to get it on the table, I actually find it to be a really relaxing meal to make.  Just follow along with my two tips for making perfect risotto, and as long as you keep them in mind, you'll have a plate of creamy and delicious dish in no time - with no fuss, either!

Giada's Top Tips On Cooking The Perfect Risotto

1. The rice. The key to a good risotto is the rice. Arborio, a short-grain variety, is my choice for a creamy, velvety risotto. Carnaroli is another great short-grain option, along with Vialone Nano, though it's a harder variety to find. The reason why these types of rice are the best option is that they have a very high starch content, and the starches are what make risotto so creamy and delicious - in a similar way that starchy pasta water does.
2. Gradually adding the liquid. Another key to successful risotto is the gradual addition of the cooking liquid. Unlike many dishes, for risotto, you don't combine a set amount of rice with a set amount of liquid and cook it together. With risotto, you add the liquid in small increments, stirring all the while and allowing the rice to absorb the liquid, for about 20 minutes. So, risotto isn't a thing to serve if your other dishes involve last-minute preparations; you don't want to be stirring the risotto with one hand while trying to saute chicken breasts with the other. For that reason, I like to serve risotto with something that comes out of the oven: a slow braised stew, for example, or any roast.
Ready to give risotto a shot? Check out the recipes below to get started - all while being sure to keep Giada's two tips in mind! Worried about having too many leftovers? Make arancini di riso with it!


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