Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Risotto with Smoked Bacon and Tomato

A classic Italian risotto, with plenty of onions, smoked bacon and sun-dried tomatoes. You will want to keep going back for more! Recipe serves 4-6.


8 sun-dried tomatoes in olive oil
10 ounces (310 g) good-quality smoked back bacon (rind removed)
6 tablespoons butter
1 pound (250 g) onions, roughly chopped
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 3/4 cup risotto rice
1 3/4 cup dry white wine
4 cups simmering vegetable stock
2/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
3 tablespoons mixed chopped fresh chives and flat leaf parsley
Salt and freshly ground black pepper


1. Drain the sun-dried tomatoes and reserve 1 tablespoon of the oil. Roughly chop the tomatoes and set aside. Cut the bacon into 1 inch (2.5 cm) pieces.
2. Heat the oil from the sun dried tomatoes in a large saucepan. Fry the bacon until well cooked and golden. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on kitchen paper.
3. Heat 2 tablespoons of the butter in a saucepan and fry the onions and garlic over a medium heat for 10 minutes, until soft and golden brown.
4. Stir in the rice. Cook for 1 minute, until the grains turn translucent. Stir the wine into the stock. Add a large spoonful of the mixture to the rice and cook gently until the liquid has been absorbed.
5. Stir in another spoonful of the stock and wine mixture and allow it to be absorbed. Repeat this process until all the liquid has been used up. This should take 25-30 minutes. This risotto will turn thick and creamy, and the rice should be tender but not sticky.
6. Just before serving, stir in the bacon, sun dried tomatoes, Parmesan cheese, half the herbs and the remaining butter. Adjust the seasoning (remember that the bacon may be quite salty) and serve sprinkled with the remaining herbs.

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