Arborio Rice Recipes?

sarahsocal

I have never been a huge fan of risotto but always felt like if I just found the right recipe I would change my mind. So I found a recipe for shrimp risotto which was very highly rated and gave it a try. Guess what? Still not a huge fan of risotto. It was fine. Not bad, not wow, just fine.

Now I have half a bag of arborio rice. Anyone have a fabulous recipe for something other than risotto that uses arborio rice??

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gardengal48 (PNW Z8/9)

You can use it to make paella. Personally, I would just stick to the risotto :-) Much less fuss and bother and I love it, especially at this time of year. Keep trying different recipes.....I'm sure you'll find one you decide is worth the effort. I really like mushroom or butternut squash risotto.

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plllog

It's rice. You can make it like other rice. I'd try toasting it, like for Mexican rice. That might lessen the starch migration.

A common use for arboria, is arancini (rice balls). I'm sure the starch and shape must help them hold together, compared to basmati, for instance. :) I've made them, but think you'd do better finding a recipe that suits you.

Re the risotto, have you tried it with nothing but broth in it? That'll tell you whether it's the risotto you don't like or the recipe. I've read that originally, it was just made with water, but the current standard is to use broth or stock. I always use chicken stock. Restaurants may use veal stock, but I only make (and freeze) chicken and beef stocks. I do sometimes dress risotto with a small dollop of crème fraiche and a spoon parmesan cheese (i.e., pungent salt), but if it doesn't taste good on its own, it's not going to improve with additions. If it does taste good on its own, try adding things you think you'll like. Not that there's any reason not to just write it off as something you don't care for.

You can always just trade the rice with a family member, friend or neighbor. :)

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Sherry

After watching Gordon Ramsey scream at almost everyone on Hell's Kitchen, I have never tried it, LOL. The only thing my Dad cooked was Uncle Ben's.

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sarahsocal

This was the recipe:

Lemony Shrimp Risotto

Cooked with stock plus additions including fennel, onion, shrimp, etc.

Again, it was fine but that was it. After all those rave reviews! Again, I think I am just not a risotto gal.

I may give the arancini a try. I think I am just mad that I caved to the risotto hype again.

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beesneeds

Paella, mmmm.

I happen to really like risottos. One that I make that kind of isn't an actual risotto is done with squash and chickpeas and gets a good hit of the curry. More of a squash dish with arborio rice. So thick you can scoop it with naan :) I used to make a casserole with arborio, chicken, tinned cream soup, and broccoli.. probably cheese too. It was a crockpot thing. Arborio is also nice to use sometimes for chicken in wine sauce with rice.

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Sherry

I think your problem was that it was a Giada recipe. I am NOT a fan of any of her stuff, no matter what the reviews.

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gardengirl37232

It would be great for rice pudding, nice and creamy.

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Jasdip

^^^My rice pudding recipe calls for arborio, but I use any short-grain rice. I don't like risotto either, but I love rice pudding.

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plllog

That's not risotto!!

I have to admit that, expecting it to look like risotto, I was put off by the picture, which isn't appealing. I suppose the dish tastes okay, but it's not something I'd go out of my way to make.

Risotto

4-5 c. stock or broth (or water)

1 c. arborio (or other starchy rice that sheds (only a few kinds will make a true risotto, though people call all kinds of weird grains "risotto" even though they don't shed starch)

Seasoning

Optional: oil and/or butter (1-2 tbsp. total)

Optional: cream, cheese, onion (shallot, leek, whatever), herbs, dry white wine or madeira, and whatever additions you fancy...but best to keep it plain to get the real risotto experience.

Bring the liquid to a boil in a saucepan and reduce to a simmer to keep warm.

While doing that, toast the rice in a large skillet over high-low or low-medium heat (i.e., around #3 or just a little more than low flame). Some people like to toast in butter and/or oil, others like to toast it dry. If you do toast dry, you might need more of the liquid. If your rice is older and drier, you might also need more of the liquid. Otherwise, if you have softer (than drier) rice and use fat, you might not need as much liquid.

After toasting the rice for 2-3 minutes, you'll see a bit of a change, sort of like you do with chopped onions, when they get hot. Add a ladle (6-8 oz.) of the liquid, still over the same heat, and stir. You don't really have to stir constantly if you have a heavy pan that's not prone to scorching, but don't go anywhere or multitask. Like you could chop an onion next to the stove, stirring intermittently, or wash your hands, but keep stirring, fairly slowly. The agitation of stirring encourages the starch to shed. When all the liquid is soaked up, add another ladle. Keep stirring.

Keep going until the rice is soft enough to bite but still firm in the middle, rather than soft all the way through. Al dente-ish. It should take around half an hour, or a bit less, and about a quart of liquid or a bit more. When it's done, turn off the heat and let it set to incorporate the last of the liquid and firm up a bit (really, release steam).

Taste. Season to taste. Add a bit of cream, and/or grated tasty cheese, for extra richness and punch, if you like. It's not necessary, though.

You can use risotto as the basis for a dish with proteins, mushrooms, squash, or whatever you can think of, really, but the more you goop it up, the less like actual risotto it is and the less worth the bother. You can also sauté something oniony with wine (or deglazed with wine) first and use that and its fat to toast your rice and make your risotto, for more flavor. But plain risotto, with just stock (and seasoning), or with just stock and a little fat, is really all you need for something terrific. You don't need to gild the lily.

That said, Sara, you might just not like risotto, which is cool. I'm just saying don't judge by that kind of recipe.

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beesneeds

Missed the Giada part there.. Never trust a cook that tastes yet you never see swallow their own cooking.

Anywho, something I noticed about the recipe that I don't do is skipping the toasting of the rice, like pillog has said. The aromatics are sweated/sauteed then the rice added. Too much moisture there for the rice to toast, which IMO is a dry method. Toasting a short grain starchy rice is sort of a micro-caramelization that works better before moisture is introduced rather than after.

Now, doing a aromatic sweat/saute with the removal of the wet stuff and allowing an oil fond to work up with the rice before reintroducing the wet aromatics as the first moistening of the rice before adding liquid can be.. mmmm.

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Sherry

"Never trust a cook that tastes yet you never see swallow their own cooking."

Yep! Just another pretty face with no cooking experience. She is the Kardashian of cooking.

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nekotish

Not a Giada fan either - her affected accent drives me crazy, but also, I have found most of her recipes lacking... I have never made risotto without wine and I think that adds something. That being said, you like what you like and if risotto doesn't blow your skirt up, then don't keep trying. Sometimes, it's better to throw away a bag of rice (or cook it for your dog if you have one) than spending a bunch of money on things to make something that you don't like palatable!

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Jasdip

Ohhh, did someone mention paella? I'd love a good Paella recipe

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Islay Corbel

I'm not a fan of proper, sloppy risotto........I wouldn't mind throwing the rice out lol

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seagrass_gw

I have had delicious risottos in restaurants but always as an accompaniment for fish/shellfish. I'm surprised by al dente rice, but I do love it. Have never been compelled to make it myself. I prefer long grain rice with my cooking.

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lindac92

I LOOOOOVE rissoto. I am sure I had had it before but the one that really turned me on to making it was at a famous ( but I forget the name) Restaurant in Venice. a Creamy sort of puddle-ish mound with bits of beef adn tiny bits of mushroom.
I don't like arugula....and add fennel to that and you have a lot of bitter going on there....and just ick!
I Start with a couple of T. olive oil in a Dutchoven, heat and add a cup of rice and cook until there is some that has become translucent, then add a good half cup of wine....I like a dry white....sauvignon blanc...of leftover, flat champagne is heaven! Stir until absorbed, then add about 4 or 5 oz of finely chopped mushrooms and about 2 T finely chopped onions or shallots., they will release moisture, cook stirring almost constantly uintil it is absorbed, then begin adding warm chicken broth, stirring very often, add a ladle at a time and cook until it's absorbed unti;l the rice is aldente, then add another half ladle and remove from heat. Stir in some....about an oz and a half of fresh grated parmesan cheese and serve.
Other add ins I like are bits of sundried tomato, cut back on the mushrooms and/or a handful of fresh spinach cut fine with the last of the broth.
Yum....if you don't like rissoto you haven't had it properly made!

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sleevendog (5a NY 6aNYC NL CA)

Maybe DaRomano in Venice? It has been a while. I just remember needing reservations just for the risotto.

I do think having it made correctly or the correct recipe may help. Doing a google image search only one out of hundred looked correct. Happened to be a best chefs of Italy type website. Cooking blogs, especially millennials, are making it in their insta-pots. Not risotto.

I could add ten more 'O's' to Lindas 'love'. I've made MarcellaHazan's porcini risotto twice recently. Doubled the recipe and made arancini the next day. Firms up a bit with a night in the fridge.

Anytime I'm near EssexMarket I stop by the AraciniBros.

One of my favorite Anthony Bordain episodes. This is just a 3min snippet.




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lindac92

The restaurant was Down a "street" about half way across Piazza San Marco....on your left as you are facing San Marco....just a short way down that street. Was travelling with an art study group led by an artist (American) in residence in Venice....and were told the reservations were very much to be desired. And I remember the old almost transparent mirrors on the walls.
Wish I could remember the name. Could be DaRomano....i'll have to look it up.
Nope, wasn't DaRomano, that's on Burano.

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Islay Corbel

Ooo not for me. Oddly enough I love rice pudding but that sloppy risotto.....nooooooo

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plllog

Sloppy? I've had it served that way, and it wasn’t nice, but I'd call most of the risottos I've eaten more gooey than sloppy. But that might be about how we use words than any differences in the food...

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Islay Corbel

Well, did you watch the Bourdain video? For me, that's sloppy!

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artemis_ma

Gotta admit, I am no fan of risotto either. "Mushy rice". Rice pudding does not work for me either. (And I love bread pudding. ) and for me, I know it's the rice of the risotto.

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plllog

Oh, dear! You're right, Islay! I hadn't watched it because I knew it would be full of stuff that I'm allergic to (it is), but you're so right! That is sloppy! I was taught that the rice must absorb the stock, and the kernels should still have definition, that it should be gooey but not wet. It's not supposed to be rice porridge!

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sleevendog (5a NY 6aNYC NL CA)

I expected someone to pick up on that. I bet it is devine. Aggressive stirring just before serving creates a very silky broth. That one is about the broth.

And no, I've not had one that wet or make mine that way. Seems an interpretation for that specific broth. (risotto does tend to firm up a bit at the table). I'm sure even some Italians would scratch their heads but great chefs do often elevate an ingredient especially in a tasting menu.

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bbstx

I’ve really tried to like risotto, but I just don’t get it. It’s just rice. My daughter was taught to make risotto by her MIL who was taught by her father who was from Italy. DD loves it. I’ve even eaten risotto made by John Currence. The judges on Chopped pronounced his risotto perfect but not challenging enough and chopped him.

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plllog

Bbstx, I don't like olives. It's okay. Neither you, nor Sarah, is required to like risotto.

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bbstx

HA! Plllog. Is this where I’m supposed to convince you that olives are really good and the ones you’ve had just weren’t cooked right. 😂😂

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Islay Corbel

From what I e always understood, risotto is supposed to be, well, sloppy!

all'onda - wavy, or flowing in waves

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l pinkmountain

Another non risotto fan here. But I am a fan of Giada DeLaurentis. I have had very good success with her recipes and I don't get into any personal issues about her presentation. All of her recipes that I have tried came out good (I'm sure she didn't invent those recipes nor do most TV cooks). That said, I don't make risotto much with anyone's recipes, since I don't like it. I might try it in pudding, that sounds like a good plan but I don't eat a lot of desserts so it hasn't made it onto the "to do" list. Still, I have a big jar of it in the pantry.

Here's an arborio rice recipe I found yesterday, from Lidia Bastianich that might make it onto my dinner rotation. I make lentils and rice in a similar fashion with brown rice. https://lidiasitaly.com/recipes/rice-lentils/

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sarahsocal

I am with Pink Mountain both on risotto and Giada. I have had good luck with many of Giada's recipes (made her fontina and sage stuffed chicken this weekend - it was de-lish). Yes she is a little too, how to put this, cleavey for my taste but she has some good recipes. Not all are great as evidenced by the risotto but I suspect that is true of any chef/cook.

For those of you who haven't liked her recipes, I would love to know which ones you specifically didn't like so I can avoid them.


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l pinkmountain

I can't say about ones I haven't liked, I don't really cook that much nor cook strictly from her recipe collection, but I love this one, "Italian style baked beans." It's very "sweet and sour" which is how I like my baked beans. Hubs less so . . .

https://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/giada-de-laurentiis/italian-style-baked-beans-recipe-1916108

I also like to make her cranberry pistachio biscotti at Christmas time. And her heath crunch cookies with hazelnuts. Neither one of my regular cookies but for the holidays worth the expense and time.

https://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/giada-de-laurentiis/holiday-biscotti-recipe3-2014062


https://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/giada-de-laurentiis/hazelnut-chocolate-chip-cookies-recipe2-1944668

I also like her fried ravioli, which are not earth shaking, but I had never heard of them before watching that episode of her entertaining show. Obviously a special treat, and I do recall thinking, "She doesn't look like she eats much fried ravioli . . . "https://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/giada-de-laurentiis/fried-ravioli-recipe-1945266

OT Edited to add here's another recipe of her's I like. Again, nothing earth shattering but I never thought to add marinara to soup to give it a quick blast of flavor . . . .

https://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/giada-de-laurentiis/quick-and-spicy-tomato-soup-recipe-1947762

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Jasdip

Years and years and years ago I came across Giada's Pasta Primavera. It's a keeper and I use it religiously.

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sleevendog (5a NY 6aNYC NL CA)

"...From what I e always understood, risotto is supposed to be, well, sloppy! "

Well, not really. More like flowing lava. Rather similar to the video with Bourdain. Easily eaten with a fork. Understandable if naysayers dislike Italian food. Clearly those in dis-like have not had risotto properly prepared.

Venice is a magical city I've visited many times. To chuckle at a restaurant gem and Anthony Bourdain is just bizarre. Sure my dad would not 'get it'. His palate as my mothers are not and have never been exploratory. An advance palate is open to trying new things. It is not food snotty. It is an endless joy like gardening. So much to try/taste/learn. 35 years of gardening is still a learning experience as well as the cooking/kitchen experience. A shame to shut down knowledge and exploration because of one or two fails. Shame on those that dis and think they are more experienced/knowledgable than a very historically based cuisine In deep passionate Northern Italian tradition.



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Gooster

This makes me crave some risotto. Guess what I'm making soon.


I've had some decent things from a Giada recipe. But that risotto recipe has it all mixed up in step 2 -- especially all the cold liquids. It is not that difficult to do it correctly, but the shortcut she proposes produces a different result.


The Bourdain video really highlights the importance of stock to the dish.

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mercurygirl

I found a good recipe on here for a paella salad, search Cooking for it. It called for long grain, but maybe arborio could work.

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sarahsocal

The funny thing is that I didn't actually follow the recipe because I know it isn't how risotto is made. I toasted the risotto, used warm stock and added gradually. Still MEH.

Rice pudding, here I come!

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plllog

LOL! Well, in that case, Sarah, you just don't like risotto! Especially if you tasted it before adding all the other stuff. My mother doesn't like pasta. She'd order pasta primavera at restaurants and pick the pasta out of it. :) Did you decide what you're going to do with the extra rice?

IC, I've been trying to pin down "all'onda" for days, trying to find a real definition rather than "y'know, like a wave!" I have enough language that I can understand that much for myself, but I wanted a definitive answer as to what it's supposed to mean in risotto. There are such definitions for al dente, so it shouldn't be this hard. I've come to the conclusion that a lot of people who use the term don't know either, and many of them--not all--show pictures of soupy mess.

The best definition I found was from Andrew Zimmern, who is a chef and TV personality who is famous for travelling the world and eating everything. I've made a couple of recipes from his site that were beyond excellent as well (if, like other TV chefs, he has someone ghosting the recipes, that someone is really good, but I wouldn't be surprised if he does his own). The risotto in the picture looked a bit tight, if anything, definitely not soupy, but looking like a normal risotto should, to my eye.

"[Risotto] should be served all’onda, as the Italians say. It should be fluid but not runny, and spread across the plate when served, the way hot lava creeps across the land." Sleevendog also said "lava". I'm thinking that's the going definition.

What I also learned is where an issue may have cropped up. Many recipes I've seen this week, call for a half ladle to full ladle of stock to be added just before removing the pan from the heat. This is fine if you have a heavy pan which will steam out, and if your definition of "absorbed" is so fully sucked into the rice there's no gooeyness left. The last bit will rehydrate the goo and the extra will steam out. This could be a hedge in restaurants to keep the risotto from drying out, especially if it goes to a keep warm area. OTOH, when the risotto is perfect, and you just let it rest a minute before plating, this extra stock is unnecessary, and if it doesn't absorb/steam out, it makes soupy glue. And those who haven't had a world class risotto--and those who are not like the fish stock obsessed chef from Sleevendog's video, using the rice as a vehicle for the stock, rather than vice-versa--if you just follow those restaurant directions that are counting on the risotto sitting around and drying out, you could think that soupy was normal.

I treated an out-of-towner friend to dinner in a very fancy, renowned restaurant in a neighborhood of world class restaurants. It was small plates, and I insisted on getting a risotto because she'd never had one. It was decidedly not all'onda! It was dry as a bone. Served in a heap rather than self-levelling in a flat dish. It reminded me of nothing so much as the stuffed rice they served in public school cafeterias when I was a kid. The other dishes were exceptionally delicious. The rice could have used that last ladle of stock, at the least.

I reiterate, however, it should most definitely not be rice porridge.

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antiquesilver

I learned to make risotto from a chef teaching a cooking class & I absolutely love it although it wasn't as loose as the Bourdain video. We also used homemade veal stock in the class, which is almost non-existent outside of the restaurant industry, but it can't be beat for its silkiness. Quality stock is a must.

With the addition of the last ladle of stock (& before the cheese), I sometimes add sauteed mushrooms, crumbled bacon, lemon zests if it's to accompany fish, chopped grilled leeks, or whatever. When I've had risotto as a side dish in restaurants, it's usually disappointing - more like a moist pilaf.

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