At work yesterday, I was thinking about making either Chicken Marsala or an Italian-style Paella for dinner. Then, I got home and remembered I had Italian sausage and pancetta in the fridge and a brand new box of arborio rice in the cupboard that was just dying to be used. So, with input from my husband, I decided to try my hand at Giada's Dirty Risotto.
I've never made risotto before. Well, I've never made it intentionally, that is. That time I sort of accidentally turned basmati rice into risotto doesn't exactly count. Coincidentally, I've also never made or even eaten dirty rice.
This recipe was really easy. I found it a little annoying to need to stand over the stove and stir constantly for about 25 minutes, but that was only a small issue. We both really liked this dish and I will definitely make it again, though probably on a less hot day, or when/if we finally get central air.
Recipe by Giada de Laurentiis, adapted
Total Cook & Prep Time - about an hour
5 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
2 TBSP butter
2 ounces pancetta, chopped
6 oz Italian turkey sausage
3/4 cup finely chopped onion
1 cup chopped red bell pepper (I used a mix of red & green)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 cups Arborio rice or medium-grain white rice
1/2 cup dry white wine
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan
1 TBSP chopped fresh Italian parsley leaves
In a medium saucepan, bring the broth to a simmer. Cover the broth and keep warm over low heat. I'm not sure this was necessary, as I started with room-temperature broth.
In a large heavy skillet, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the pancetta and sausage and saute until golden brown, about 5 minutes.
Add the onion and bell pepper and saute until tender, scraping up the browned bits on the bottom of the pan, about 8 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
Add the rice and stir to coat.
Add the wine and simmer until the wine has almost completely evaporated, about 1 minute.
Add 1/2 cup of simmering broth and stir until almost completely absorbed, about 2 minutes.
Continue cooking the rice, adding the broth 1/2 cup at a time, stirring constantly and allowing each addition of broth to absorb before adding the next, until the rice is tender but still firm to the bite and the mixture is creamy, about 25 to 30 minutes total. Remove from the heat.
Stir in 3/4 of the Parmesan. Transfer the risotto to a serving bowl. Sprinkle with the parsley and remaining Parmesan and serve immediately.