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Risotto alla Milanese Saffron Risotto

Serves 4

According to food historian Anna Gosetti della Salda, the original recipe for Risotto alla Milanese is a subject of dispute. Some say wine was a key ingredient; others declare saffron has always been included. This easy-to-make version uses flavorful Safinter saffron and Campanini Vialone Nano rice of the Veneto region. The traditional rice absorbs twice its weight in liquid and is considered the ideal grain for authentic, creamy risotto.

  1. In saucepan, bring stock to a gentle simmer over medium heat. Put saffron and ½ cup hot stock into a small bowl, cover and set aside to let soften. Cover stock and keep hot.
  2. In medium pot, heat 5 tbsp. butter over medium heat. Add onions and cook, stirring, until softened, 2-3 minutes. Add rice and cook, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until opaque, about 4 minutes.
  3. Add ½ cup stock and cook, stirring often, until stock is mostly absorbed, 2-3 minutes. Add another ½ cup stock and repeat process until all the stock is used, about 25 minutes total. Continue cooking rice until just al dente, about 3 minutes more.
  4. Strain saffron from stock over a bowl and set saffron aside. Pour saffron-infused stock into rice and cook, stirring constantly, about 2 minutes. Gently stir in saffron threads.
  5. Remove from heat and stir in remaining butter and half the grated cheese. Serve risotto with remaining cheese on the side.

Adapted from: Saveur Magazine