Risotto Milanese Style (Risotto Alla Milanese)

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Risotto Milanese accompanies Ossobuco beautifully.  I am pairing these two dishes together as they are a match made in heaven.  Some delicious comfort food during the week or weekend can be pleasurable. Home cooked, hearty food to warm the soul inside and out.

Ingredients
1 onion (finely chopped)
40 grams butter (unsalted)
400 grams Arborio Rice
1 glass dry white wine
1.5 litres vegetable stock (hot)
1 sachet saffron (10 grams)
6 tablespoons Parmesan cheese
4 tablespoons olive oil

Preparation Time:    15 minutes
Cooking Time:    30 minutes + 2 minutes resting time
Serves:    4 people

  1. Heat the vegetable stock in a pot large enough and when it comes to a simmer turn off the heat.  Add the saffron threads to the stock and allow to infuse for a few minutes until the stock becomes a orange in colour.
  2. Heat the oil in a pan, add the onion and saute until the onion has softened.
  3. Add the rice and cook for a few minutes stirring.
  4. Add the wine into the rice.
  5. Gradually start adding the stock and continue stirring until the stock evaporates into the rice.  Add more stock and continue to stir the rice until it has absorbed more stock. Continue this process until all the stock has been used and the rice has released its starches, has a creamy consistency and is al dente.  The al dente rice is still firm in the centre of the grain while the rest is soft and the rice has released all its starches into the dish.
  6. Towards the end stir in the butter and then add the Parmesan cheese. Continue to stir until thoroughly melted and combined with the risotto.  Allow to stand for a few minutes and you are ready to serve.

Cook’s Tips

To cook a good risotto, you must always stir the rice throughout the whole cooking process.  The stock must be hot or simmering whilst being added to the rice.  You do not want the rice to stick to the bottom of the pan and burn.  The temperature must be on medium to high for the risotto to bubble away in the pot with the stock.  The final result is a creamy consistency and the rice a little al dente.

Enjoy!

 

Ossobuco Milanese Style (Ossobuco Alla Milanese)

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I cannot help but gravitate to cooking hearty and soul warming food especially when the weekend is upon us.  This gorgeous dish is from the Lombardy region of Italy and you can use veal shins or the traditional beef shins. The recipe that I am sharing, I will be using the traditional cut of beef.  I have used both cuts of meat in the past and they both work very well.  However, the beef has more meat around the bone as opposed to the veal.

Ingredients
4 beef shins (with marrow bone)
1 onion (sliced)
1 clove garlic (chopped)
60 grams butter (unsalted)
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 glass dry white wine
1 cup vegetable stock
salt & freshly ground black pepper
1 carrot (diced)
2 sticks of celery (diced)
handful of parsley (chopped)
strip of lemon peel
flour (for dusting the meat)

Preparation Time:     20 minutes
Cooking Time:       1 1/2 hours
Serves:     4 people

  1. Lightly flour the four pieces of meat and place aside.
  2. In a pan large enough heat half the butter and oil.
  3. Add the meat to the pan and brown on both sides.
  4. Remove from the pan and place aside.
  5. Add the onion, saute for a few minutes, then add the garlic, carrot, celery and continue to cook for a further few minutes.
  6. When the onion, garlic, carrot and celery has softened and browned a little return the meat to the pan and add the white wine.
  7. Reduce the heat and allow to simmer gently.
  8. When the wine has evaporated, season with salt and pepper, continue to cook gently, adding a little stock at a time to the pan.
  9. Ensure that the meat does not stick to the pan.
  10. Add the chopped parsley and lemon peel halfway through the cooking process.
  11. Continue to cook gently until the meat is tender.  Mix the remaining butter into the sauce and remove the lid towards the end of cooking to thicken.
  12. Before serving remove the lemon rind.

Cook’s Tips

This dish goes very well with Risotto Milanese (saffron risotto) and gremolada, a mixture of chopped lemon rind, garlic and parsley.

Enjoy!

 

Speckknödel (Smoked Bacon Dumpling Soup)

Many of us around the world enjoy a meal of soup. They can be thick and hearty, chunky, spicy, meaty and the list goes on.  I am sharing this recipe again for those who may not have had the opportunity to see it.  This delicious Bavarian style soup boasts a light chicken broth with hearty flavoursome dumplings that enrich the soup.  This soup is guaranteed to warm your heart and soul and it’s a great way to use up some of that left over bread.

500 grams of White Bread (1-2 days old)
150 grams Unsalted Butter
5 Eggs
200 grams Speck or Smoked Bacon (cut into small pieces)
500 ml Milk (full cream)
1 bunch of flat leaf Parsley (finely chopped)
1 bunch of Spring Onion (thinly sliced)
5 tablespoons of Plain Flour
Salt & Pepper to taste
3 litres of Chicken or Vegetable Stock

Preparation Time:     30 minutes (Plus 3 hours resting time)
Cooking Time:     30 minutes
Serves:      4-6 people
Makes:     Approximately 8-10 Knödel

IMG_9251aIn a saucepan pour in the milk, butter and place over medium heat to allow the butter to melt.  Once all the butter is melted, remove from the heat and place aside to cool down for approximately five minutes.

Cut the bread into cubes and place in a large bowl.  Add the bacon pieces, chopped parsley and sliced spring onion.   Whisk the eggs with a fork and add to the bread mixture.   With a wooden spoon thoroughly combine the eggs with the bread, bacon, parsley and spring onion.  Pour the milk and butter over the bread mixture, add salt and pepper.  With your hands combine and mix all of these ingredients thoroughly and allow to stand covered with a tea towel for 3 hours.

IMG_9249aIMG_9255aAdd the flour to the mixture and combine thoroughly.  With wet hands make into balls  approximately the size of a tennis ball.  Ensure that you press firmly during this process.

Place the Knödel (dumplings) into the simmering broth for approximately 15 minutes once ready they will gradually rise to the top.

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Cook’s Tips

Home made chicken or vegetable stock is always favourable with this dish however, if you are pressed for time a good quality stock from a supermarket will be fine.

I am generous with the parsley and the spring onion.   They add freshness and flavour to the soup.

By pressing the mixture firmly whilst making the balls ensures that they hold together when simmering in the broth.

If you have any leftover mixture you can place it in a container and freeze it to use another time.

Enjoy!