Carnaroli Risotto with Shaved White Truffles from Alba
Makes 6 to 8 servings
2 tablespoons canola oil
3 tablespoons minced onions (minced smaller than the grains of rice)
1 cup Carnaroli rice
1 cup crisp dry white, wine, such as Sauvignon Blanc
2 cups Chicken Stock, Vegetable Stock, Mushroom Stock or water, heated to a simmer
2 to 2 ½ cups Chicken Stock, Vegetable Stock, Mushroom Stock, or water, heated to a simmer (for risotto with white truffles, use 1 ¼ cups chicken stock and 1 ¼ cup water)
¼ teaspoon kosher salt, or to taste
5 tablespoons (2 ½ oz) unsalted butter
¾ cup heavy cream, whipped to soft peaks
¼ cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
3 tablespoons white truffle oil
Fresh white truffle (optional)
Base the liquid used in preparing the risotto on the finished dish. For example, use chicken stock when you are serving meat, or vegetable stock for an asparagus garnish. Risotto normally requires a cook’s undivided attention over a long period of time. This two-part method allows you to begin the rice preparation the day before and makes the final cooking time less than ten minutes. The dish should be served as soon as it is completed.
Heat the oil in a deep heavy sauté pan over medium heat. Stir in the onions and cook slowly until softened and translucent but not browned. Mix in the rice and stir for 3 to 4 minutes.
Add the wine and let it simmer, without stirring, for 2 to 3 minutes. (After adding the wine, lean close to the pan and breathe in the aroma. You will be able to smell and feel the raw alcohol at the back of your nose. Breathe it in several times during the cooking process, and as the alcohol evaporates and the rice beings to toast, the raw alcohol smell will dissipate and be replaced wit the smell of toasted rice.) When the liquid has been absorbed, being stirring to “toast” the rice. The rice should not brown, but it will separate into individual grains, looking much as it did before the wine was added. Scrape the bottom of the pan to keep the rice from sticking. The alcohol smell should be completely gone. Increase the heat and add the stock; it should just cover the rice. When it boils, reduce the heat and simmer for 4 minutes. Drain the rice, discarding any remaining liquid, Spread the rice in a 9” X 13” pan or other similar size container, cover, and refrigerate for several hours, or up to a day.
Put the rice in a sauté pan, add ½ cup of the stock and the salt, and stir over high heat until the liquid begins to simmer; it should continue to simmer throughout the cooking. As the stock evaporates, add ½ cup more. Continue to cook, adding more stock as it evaporates and tasting the rice from time to time. Thee finished rice will be similar to al dente pasta; it should be thoroughly cooked but with a little “bite” remaining to it, never mushy. When the rice is cooked, let whatever liquid remains in the pan evaporate (you may not use all the stock called for).
Remove the risotto from the heat and, using a wooden spoon, beat in the butter a little at a time, working quickly so it will “emulsify” with the rice (creating a creamy risotto) rather than melt into the risotto. Vigorously beat in the whipped cream, cheese, salt to taste, and the white truffle oil, if using. Divide among serving bowls. Place shavings of white truffle, if issuing, over the top of the risotto: The truffle can be shaved over the risotto at the table if you have a truffle slicer, or it can be sliced in the kitchen on a mandolin and then scattered over the risotto. Serve immediately.
The French Laundry Cookbook, pg 88