Sunday, March 11, 2007

Sausage Risotto with Zucchini and Fontina

Sausage Risotto with Zucchini and FontinaI invented this main dish after reading about the wonders of Arborio rice ten years ago. It was a hit--even with the sneaky zucchini hiding here and there--and has been in production ever since.

3/4 pound Italian sausage
1 small zucchini
1 small onion
4 garlic cloves, minced
8 cups chicken stock
2 cups Arborio rice, unrinsed
2 Roma tomatoes, diced
1/2 cup grated parmesan
6 ounces grated fontina
1/2 teaspoon dried sage
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
salt to taste, maybe 1/4 teaspoon at most
1/2 cup pine nuts

In a large pan break up the sausage and cook it over a medium-high heat until it's nicely browned. Remove the sausage from the pan and reserve in a large bowl.

Meanwhile in a medium saucepan bring the chicken stock to a boil. Once it is boiling turn the heat down and keep the stock near boiling point.

Finely dice the zucchini (how finely will depend on how scared of green your family is) and the onion. Add them to the pan and saute them in the sausage drippings along with minced garlic and 2 cups of rice--stirring constantly--until the rice turns opaque and the vegetables turn translucent.

Once the rice is ready turn the heat down to medium-low and begin adding the stock to the rice mixture starting with only one cup of liquid. Stir the stock into the rice as gently and as little as possible until the liquid is all absorbed. Then add a half cup. Stir that stock in until it too is absorbed completely--stirring as little as possible but taking care that the rice on the bottom doesn't burn. This will help the gluten to coat the rice and enhance the creamy texture for which risotto is famous.

Continue like this, adding the stock half a cup or a cup at a time until the rice is absorbing the liquid at a much slower rate--about twenty minutes. When the the liquid has all been added and the last half cup is nearly absorbed, then add the diced tomatoes, cheeses, sage, pepper, salt and browned sausage. Stir to combine and serve immediately.

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My Marrakech said...

That looks absolutely delicious. Not sure we can get arborio here in Marrakesh. Hmmm...

Author Mom DogNut said...

Note to self: Do NOT read Michelle's blog when hungry!!!

Off to the grocery store for some ingredients. :)

Melissa R. Garrett said...

Oh this sounds so good!! Thanks for sharing -I will defninitely give this one a go :-)

Our 4 Munchkins...6 pigtales & a buzzcut! said...

This dish looks extremly delicious!! Love your Blog!

Mrs. Chicky said...

Oh my gawd, that sounds yummy. I know what I'm having for dinner tomorrow night.

Amber said...

That looks awesome...and not too complicated. The only other time I made risotto it took me about two hours just to chop all the blasted ingredients.

Sheila in Seattle said...

Sounds soooo delicious!

Thanks for sharing.