Sunday, August 31, 2008

Beer and Cheddar Risotto

On one of our first dates, Chuck took me to a nice restaurant (where we ultimately got engaged) and I ordered risotto from the menu for the first time. And oh, my. Once I tasted it I could not believe I had gone almost 23 years without having it before! The texture of risotto is so creamy and delicious and, if made correctly, should just melt in your mouth.

People may shy away from risotto because of it's long and involved cooking time. Well, let me tell you, the result is well worth it. In my experience, every risotto follows the same basic premise: saute some onions and garlic in oil and butter, add the risotto and coat with the oil until it is opaque, then add liquid and wait for it to come to it's creamy, rich goodness. Then add any extra ingredients. You really don't need to stir continually, just watch it and when the liquid starts evaporating, give it another stir and go on preparing the rest of your meal.

I served this particular risotto with a grilled Porterhouse steak and sauteed zucchini and tomatoes. Enjoy!

Beer and Cheddar Risotto
from FayeD on What's Cooking board on The Nest
Makes 6 servings

1/2 small onion, diced
1-2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon butter
2+ tablespoons olive oil
2 cups Arborio rice
12 oz. bottle of beer (preferably not light beer)
49.5 ounce can of chicken broth
5 ounces sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
1/3 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
1/3 cup Parmesan cheese, shredded
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

Pour chicken broth into medium saucepan. Keep warm over low heat.

Heat large saute pan over medium-low heat. Add butter and 2 tablespoons olive oil. Heat just until butter is melted. Add onion and saute for 3-5 minutes, until soft and translucent. Turn heat to medium-high and add garlic. Cook for 30 seconds to 1 minute, just until fragrant.

Add rice and saute for 2 minutes, stirring constantly until opaque, adding more olive oil as necessary to coat the rice.

This dish was made last minute; so all I had were green onions. They were quite tasty!
Pour in beer, turn heat up to high until it starts to simmer.

Turn heat back to medium-low and add the chicken broth 1/2 cup at a time, stirring until liquid dissolves. You may not need to use all of the chicken broth - risotto should be creamy and just slightly al dente. This should take 30 minutes or more.

Remove from heat and stir in the cheeses and cayenne pepper.

I think due to it's texture (or my paltry photography skills), risotto does not photograph very well. Don't let that stop you from making this!


BMK said...

What a great flavor combination. This would pair well with a lot of dishes. Yours looks delicious.

Anonymous said...

ooooh! Totally going to have to try this. Beer and cheesy dishes are two o my husband's faves!

Anonymous said...

Um, yeah, this looks AWESOME. Cheddar and beer? Match made in heaven. The cheesiness may not be a fave for my fiance, so maybe this will be an on-my-own night dinner...

Anonymous said...

I'm so glad you liked this recipe! This is actually my recipe that I created for Easter a couple years ago. It was easier than slicing potatoes by hand for an au gratin. There's also pressure cooker instructions if you are interested.