Fresh Tomato Risotto

This is one of our favorite ways to use the tomatoes from our garden.  It's a recipe taken from the cookbook Cucina Rustica and is naturally gluten free.  While risotto is a relatively easy dish to make, it is time intensive.  This usually takes me an hour to make start to finish.  The original recipe calls for wine, but since we don't drink alcohol I use additional broth instead. I hope your family enjoys it as much as ours!

Fresh Tomato Risotto
  • 6 cups chicken brothtablespoons butter, divided
  • 3 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium onion finely chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 cups uncooked Arborio rice
  • 8 medium tomatoes - peeled, seeded and chopped
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 cup grated mozzarella cheese
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil leaves, chopped
  • salt and ground black pepper to taste
  1. Heat the chicken broth in a medium size pot or saucepan until it's very hot. Turn off the heat but keep a lid over the broth so that it stays hot.
  2. Meanwhile, melt 2 tablespoons of the butter with the olive oil in a heave 2 quart saucepan. Add the onion and cook over low heat until it is tender.  Add the garlic and when it starts to smell fragrant (about 1 minute) add the tomatoes.  Cook over medium heat until the tomatoes break down and form a sauce.  Add the rice, turn the heat to low, and cook slowly until all the tomato sauce is absorbed.
  3. Begin to add the hot chicken broth one ladleful (about 1/2 cup) at a time, stirring frequently. Wait until each addition is almost completely absorbed before adding the next ladleful. Once you've added about half of the broth, add salt and pepper to taste.  Continue cooking risotto adding one ladleful of chicken stock at a time letting the liquid absorb before adding more. Cook, stirring frequently, until the rice is tender but still slightly chewy.
  4.  Stir in the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter, the Parmesan and mozzarella cheeses, and the basil. Stir vigorously until all the butter and cheese are absorbed.  Serve immediately.

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