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This may not come as much of a suprise to anyone who knows me but I love my food, and I love my wine.  So when I needed an impressive dish to cook the other night, I turned to a classic I have made a few times before- Red Wine Risotto.

This dish can vary in taste depending on what wine you use- the heavier the wine, the stronger the taste.  This time I used a light shiraz, Chapel Hill Parson’s Nose Shiraz 2009, from the McClaren Valley- a favourite ‘drink now’ wine of mine.  I enjoyed it so much when I tasted it that I went out and bought a case (I do this very rarely).

So to the recipe.  I ripped it out of a magazine many years ago but have found a similar one from BBC Good Food Magazine (so it may be where I got it from in the first place.)

The Fuzzy Arty Shot

Red Wine Risotto

(serves 6 as a starter, or 3 as a main)

Ingredients

  • 500ml chicken or vegetable stock, more if needed
  • 85g butter
  • 1 medium onion , chopped
  • 200g round grain risotto rice , such as arborio or carnaroli
  • 500ml red wine  (I used 400ml to make it a bit lighter)
  • grated (or shaved) Parmesan

Method

  1. Heat the stock in a saucepan and keep it warm at the side of the stove.  Melt half the butter in a shallow saucepan or casserole, add the onion with salt and pepper and sauté for 5-7 minutes until soft, but not browned. Stir in the rice and sauté it, stirring constantly, until it absorbs the butter, about 2 minutes.
  2. Stir in about half the wine with a little salt and pepper and simmer, stirring, until the rice starts to dry, 5-7 minutes. Add a couple of ladlefuls of hot stock and continue simmering, stirring gently but constantly. When the rice dries again and needs more liquid, add the remaining wine.
  3. Continue cooking, stirring all the time and adding more stock in batches. At the end of cooking, the rice should be tender, still

    You can see each grain of rice

    slightly al dente (chewy) and creamy from the starch that has begun to leach from the grains. This will take 25 to 35 minutes and don’t hesitate to use plenty of stock.

  4. Take the risotto from the heat, add the remaining butter in pieces, and stir it into the rice as it melts. Taste and adjust the seasoning. Serve the risotto in shallow bowls or on deep plates with a sprinkling of Parmesan.Serve with the rest of the bottle of wine- and enjoy.
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