I committed a cultural crime the other day. Do you ever start cooking risotto, and feel like the stirring is never ending? The moment you look away and take a break from all the stirring, the rice then starts to burn…..
First of all, let me tell you how I cook perfect jasmine/ basmati rice every single time for my Asian dishes. Wash a cup of rice (For two people) three times, pour that into a pan, fill the cup up with cold tap water, pour that over the rice, and add an extra one fifth cup of water. Add salt. Cover. Bring that to the boil, and turn it onto low heat. Let the rice steam for 15 minutes – Perfect Rice.
And so I thought… Ok so why don’t I try cooking risotto the CHINESE way? That way, I don’t need to stir. (Sorry) If you aren’t offended yet, then read on.
Serves 2. Total Time: 25 minutes
Just under 1 cup of Arborio rice
250g Sliced chestnut mushrooms
170 ml double cream (Normal, not extra thick)
A handful of chives
Some black pepper
1 vegetable stock cube
Cook the Arborio rice the Chinese way, but skip out the washing step because we need the starchy water from the rice to make the risotto nice and creamy.
Instead of using plain water to cook the rice, crumble in 1 vegetable stock cube into the pot of rice + water, so the plain water turns to hot stock as it cooks.
1. Just before the Arborio rice is fully cooked (About 13 minutes), add in the mushrooms. It will look really full and it may seem like the mushrooms will never cook in that, but they will shrink by half. Mix the mushrooms and rice together for a few minutes. (Fold them over each other)
2. When the mushrooms have shrunk, the rice should be nearly cooked through. You can see this because the Arborio rice will look a lot fatter and more round. Add in the double cream bit by bit. Let the rice absorb it first when you pour it in each time.
3. Once all the double cream has been added in and the rice has fully absorbed it, the rice should be cooked! Season with salt and pepper.
4. Plate up your risotto, and sprinkle on some chives. I think adding chives doesn’t just make it look prettier, it also enhances the flavour.
5. Check your wrist and arm. Do they hurt? 😉