The last time I made risotto was when I first came to Switzerland – it was a recipe that was strictly from memory; my Swiss Italian housemate in Australia made it and I watched. The outcome then was only average; while the taste was there, the rice was slightly undercook and there was just not enough of that cheesy flavour.
This time around, I decided to make it flavourful even though I was using smoked salmon as an added ingredient. Risotto can usually be eaten on its own and is traditionally made with Italian sausage or mushrooms but I thought to add this in since we have heaps of smoked tuna (gifts from the in-laws). I added a mix of two cheeses – Gruyère and Granna Padano (a lighter version of parmigiana cheese) – and a few strands of saffron for colour and flavour.
The result? Perfection, really. Not exactly traditional but good enough for a non-Italian cook! At least Nil loved it! 🙂
Smoked tuna risotto
Five handfuls arborio rice
Beef stock (at least 1 litres)
150 gms (or more) smoked tuna – thinly sliced
1.5 cups cheese
4 strands saffron
1 medium-sized onion – diced
6 tbsp Cointreau (or white wine)
3 tbsp butter
1 tbsp olive oil
Salt & pepper to taste
- In a pot, boil the beef stock (or water + beef stock cube) with the strands of saffron and allow to simmer gently.
- In another pot, saute the diced onions in the butter and oil on a medium-high fire until soft but not brown. Add in the rice and stir until the grains are translucent. Add in the Cointreau or white wine and stir.
- Gradually add in the beef stock-saffron mix while stirring constantly. Keep the mixture simmering and add more beef stock when necessary. The rice will absorb the stock as it cooks.
- Cook for 20 minutes or until the rice has absorbed all the stock.
- Remove from the heat, and add in the cheese, tuna and salt & pepper to taste. Mix well and serve immediately.