A Taster's Journey is a newsletter on food, wine and travel. After 15 years of studying, tasting, teaching, and selling wine, I created this newsletter to not only share my passion about wine, but of food and travel as well. Each month I hope to share wines that I am drinking, food that is in season, restaurants that I have enjoyed, and places I have traveled. Enjoy!"

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Tales of Risotto

April 18th, 2013

Several years ago I visited Lake Como and was given a cookbook “Tales of Risotto, Culinary Adventures from Villa d’ Este”.

Tales of Risotto

Tales of Risotto

It includes 50 risotto recipes typical of northern Italy; and has some worthwhile tips. While most risotto recipes call for Arborio rice, this book recommends Carnaroli rice.  Although Carnaroli might have been selected because of geographic preferences, the authors point out that the rice has an advantage. Carnaroli rice doesn’t get mushy as you overcook it; which is a real plus for the home chef because you don’t need to watch it as closely as the more popular Arborio.

Carnaroli Rice

Most risotto recipes begin with sauteing onions or shallots in olive oil, but this cookbook suggests using butter. We should not be surprised, because butter is often substituted for olive oil in northern Italy. Although the butter will not make the dish more dietetic, it does make the risotto rich and creamy.

Lastly, while you constantly read how Italians frown on adding cheese to seafood dishes; this cookbook heartily recommends fresh Parmesan cheese be added to seafood risottos.

I made a Shrimp risotto with asparagus; and I added a healthy amount of Parmigiano Reggiano on top.

Risotto with Shrimp & Asparagus

Carnaroli rice, butter, and Parmigiano Reggiano will make your shrimp risotto delizioso.

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